Eye Foundation Hospital provides free surgeries for 70 glaucoma patients
As part of its ongoing efforts and collaborations to raise awareness on glaucoma and improve access to quality care and management of the eye disease in Nigeria, the Eye Foundation Hospital Group organized a 3rd Biennial International Glaucoma Symposium between February 4 and 7 in Lagos.
The theme of the international symposium was New Horizon in Diagnosis and Management of Glaucoma – Sub-Saharan Africa Perspective. The symposium drew over 82 participants from Nigeria and other countries such as Ghana, United States, Burkina Faso and the United Kingdom. It provided an opportunity for knowledge sharing, transfer of skills and training in an effort to improve glaucoma diagnosis, treatment and management not only in Nigeria but also in sub-Saharan Africa.
Eye Foundation Hospital Group organized the symposium in partnership with professionals in the sub-specialty of glaucoma and other stakeholders including Glaucoma Society of Nigeria, Cure Glaucoma Foundation, Novartis, Health Partners Ltd, New World Medical, Summit Healthcare Pharmaceuticals Ltd, St. Edmund’s Hospital, Cardinal Anthony Olubunmi Okogie and Xapon Nigeria Limited.
Knowledge partners and experts in the field of glaucoma from across Nigeria and internationally moderated different sessions over the four-day event on topics which included: Improving clinical judgement and surgical skills for Glaucoma Management; Building understanding of the unique aspects of an “African eye”; Increasing proficiency in the management of glaucoma post-cataract surgery; Adoption of best practices for treatment of glaucoma in Nigeria among others.
Patients enjoyed free screening for Glaucoma as 153 patients were screened for glaucoma while 70 patients accessed free surgeries to manage their glaucoma as part of the event providing a platform for raising awareness on access to quality care and management of glaucoma. The free surgeries were undertaken at two locations – The Eye Foundation Hospital Ikeja Lagos and Deseret Community Vision Institute, the not-for-profit arm of the Eye Foundation Hospital Group located in Ijebu Mushin, Ogun State Nigeria.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), glaucoma remains one of the leading causes of irreversible blindness worldwide. It is projected that the number of people (aged 40-80 years) with glaucoma will increase to about 112 million people by the year 2040, disproportionately affecting people in Africa.
Several studies have shown that while blindness from glaucoma is avoidable with early diagnosis and appropriate, sustained, life-long treatment, people still go blind from glaucoma in Africa due to the high cost of care and lack of awareness among patients.
Similarly, it is frequently undiagnosed, inadequately treated or treated with poor compliance to treatment regimens due to limited equipment and treatment options.
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