Updated  
October, 13 2012 09:05:00

Cataracts cause most blindness

HA NOI (VNS)— The medical sector is trying to reduce cases of blindness in the country that currently stands at 0.6 per cent of population by providing more cataract trachoma surgery and improving eye care in the community.

"Cataracts, the main cause of blindness in Viet Nam, should be controlled by increasing surgery rates to at least 2,000-2,500 cases per 1 million people (from the current rate of 1,760/1 million people) in 2013," said director of the Viet Nam National Institute of Opthalmology, Do Nhu Hon at the national eye care conference in Ha Noi yesterday.

 

Bank funds eye care

HA NOI — Standard Chartered Bank committed to donate over US$1 million for a new $1.3 million "Comprehensive Eye Care Development Project" at a meeting to mark World Sight Day jointly held in Ha Noi yesterday by the bank, the Fred Hollows Foundation and the Ha Noi Eye Hospital. per cent of the project cost would be covered by the Fred Hollows Foundation.

The project, which is under the fifth phase of a long term eye care programme, will run from 2013-16, to strengthen eye health services and infrastructure for the delivery of high quality, affordable and accessible eye care in remote areas of Viet Nam. — VNS

Surveys by the institute in the provinces of Son La, Thanh Hoa, Nghe An and Quang Nam last year showed that cataracts were still the major cause of blindness, accounting for between 55-72 per cent of cases.

Last year, cataract surgery was carried out on more than 133,500 patients, an increase of 10,000 patients compared to the previous year.

"Mobile cataract surgery campaigns should be put forward in the community, especially for the poor, with funding from the health insurance fund and donors," said Hon.

Hon said the rate of eye surgery in the community was down from last year due to a shortage of human resources at district level. Only 211 districts had eye care specialists, accounting for 30 per cent of the country's 697 districts.

Many poor patients do not have the money for cataract surgery, even though the health insurance fund covers up to 80 per cent of expenses.

Hon also said that around 3 million children in Viet Nam needed to wear glasses due to refractive errors. The rate of refractive errors was very high, between 40-50 per cent of students in urban areas, while the rate among rural students was from 10-15 per cent.

Priority would also be given to quick evaluation of trachomas in an effort to draft a plan to eliminate the disease in Viet Nam by the end of 2015, and a campaign to examine refractive errors for students aged between 11-15 would be carried out in the community.

The Viet Nam National Institute of Opthalmology said that the country had around 400,000 blind people, and 2 million more with sight in just one eye. — VNS

Send Us Your Comments:
Name:
Your E-mail address:
Title:
 

VietNamNews may edit your comments and not all emails will be published.

Highlight

Experts slam failure to save old trees Experts slam failure to save old trees

Distinguished scientists and experts in the field of urban planning raised many challenges at a conference yesterday to review Ha Noi's urban tree planning.

Whistleblowers to be rewarded up to US$160,000 1    Whistleblowers to be rewarded up to US$160,000

The Ministry of Home Affairs and the Government Inspectorate have issued a joint circular announcing that whistleblowers will be rewarded up to VND3.4 billion (US$160,000).

Daewoo founder seeks to inspire youth Daewoo founder seeks to inspire youth

As you get older, you spend hours regretting each minute you wasted in your youth, which flies by.

IZ firms find pollution controls too expensive IZ firms find pollution controls too expensive

Many companies in industrial zones claim they lack capital to introduce equipment to save energy and lessen emissions.

Caves in Quang Binh will soon echo with the sounds of runners Caves in Quang Binh will soon echo with the sounds of runners

Quang Binh, home of the biggest cave in the world, Son Doong, is offering visitors treks, caving tours and a race.