28 July, 2021

A Ray Of Hope For The Blind

A Ray Of Hope For The Blind
Five per cent or 50 million of India's population is visually handicapped. Of this, 12 million are blind. And this number increases by half a million every year. But the bigger tragedy is that at least 80 per cent of these people can be cured by a simple cataract operation. The problem is that the country reports 2.5 million new cataract cases every year—only two million get operated and the remaining go blind. In its own way, the icare Charitable Eye Hospital in Noida, Uttar Pradesh, is trying to solve this problem. In the last fiscal, the hospital performed 6,554 cataract surgeries. This year, it's already done close to 4,000, all within a budget for Rs 1 crore. It may not be much with five lakh people going blind every year, but then even aiims performed only 5,500 such surgeries last year, with a budget multiplied many times over. From small beginnings in Delhi of 100 free cataract surgeries a year in 1984, icare is housed today in a two-storey building in a one-acre campus in Noida with three ambulances. The hospital is run by the Ishwar Charitable Trust which was founded by...

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