In 2002 Dr Kota Kumar, an Ophthalmologist, began the Eye Openers Ophthalmology Program when he saw a great need amongst the underprivileged in rural India. Since September 2012, Anglican Aid has been partnering with this eye care initiative in Payakaraopeta in the state of Andhra Pradesh.
The Eye Openers Program reaches one and a half million people in the surrounding villages. It aims to improve the sight of people treated, with eye drops and prescription glasses and surgery if necessary.
Treatment is available for anyone, regardless of race, caste, creed or religion. Most patients come from the lower castes of society, and they have little or no medical care apart from this clinic.
Loss of sight as cataracts develop is a common problem as people age. These men and women are unable to work or care for themselves, and they become a burden on their families. Cataract surgery has a very high chance of restoring enough vision to enable them to become independent and productive again. Each year the clinic sees 40,000 patients and performs 1,500 eye operations.
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