Orbis Flying Eye Hospital back in Ja
Focusing on exchanging skills and strengthening the operational capacity of eye health professionals, the Orbis Flying Eye Hospital is back in Jamaica on its eighth visit.
The Orbis Flying Eye Hospital is an accredited teaching hospital aboard an MD-10 aircraft.
Working with The University Hospital of the West Indies (UHWI), professionals will benefit from a three-week conference that will focus on cataract, glaucoma, strabismus, oculoplastic, and retina diseases.
Speaking at the opening ceremony and tour yesterday at the Learning and Development Centre at the Norman Manley International Airport, Dr Lizette Mowatt, head of the Ophthalmology Department at The UHWI and president of the Ophthalmology Society of Jamaica, said she was excited about the project as several persons in the industry would benefit from the initiative.
“The training is not only focusing on ophthalmologists. They are also focusing on our nurses because to deliver eye care is a team approach. It doesn’t require just the doctors alone. You need to have the team with you ... .This is going to go a long way to ensure that we deliver the quality service that our people need,” said Mowatt.
With data from 2017 showing that in North America and the Caribbean, Jamaica has the fifth-largest population of people ages 18 to 99 living with diabetes, Mowatt urged persons to ensure that they get their eyes checked.
“We have to find a way to reduce blindness from preventable diseases like diabetic retinopathy [and] retinopathy of prematurity. All this can be prevented with education and screening, and with all this here, it will help to highlight this problem that we can make the population more aware that you need to get your eyes checked when you have certain conditions,” said Mowatt.
Orbis International’s director of programme development and quality Amelia Geary added that the team aims “to transform lives with the prevention and treatment of avoidable blindness. We work through our strong regional partnerships to mentor, train, and inspire local teams to fight blindness in their own communities.”