Spectacle Staff Writer
The University of Lahore Teaching Hospital (UoLTH) community service collaboration with Al-Baseer Foundation (AF) in the Comprehensive Eye Care Programme (CECP) is progressing steadily. In the month of January 2018 only, the programme has benefited 3,070 patients in more than 15 camps organized in different districts of Punjub Province. Fifty-four percent of the beneficiaries are female, 37 percent male, and 9 percent children.
In all the camps conducted so far, 792 glasses and 1,580 medicines have been donated to patients, and 2,372 cases have been referred for surgical operations. Majority of the referral cases are of the cataract type of men and women above 50 years of age. This is according to Dr Fida Hussain, an Optometrist managing the CECP project.
Asked on how camp sites are identified, Mr Muhammad Zafar Iqbal, the CECP Outreach Assistant said; “we normally receive applications from different local leaders who indicate the need for eye camps. Priority is always given to non-affording families. Community leaders are asked to arrange venues and transportation of referred patients to UoLTH.”
On the day of an eye camp, patients are registered to capture their bio-data, visual acuity recording is established, and then sent for further scrutiny to identify the glasses’ number for those who might require them. Others are given some medication to clear their vision defects. At the same level, cataract patients are also identified with the use of slit lamp or specialized torch. Once identified, cataract patients are issued with referral letters that must be carried with to the UoLTH for surgical operations.