World Sight Day Walk at KBR Park, Hyderabad
Today is World Sight Day. It is a day to focus attention globally and raise awareness on issues of avoidable blindness and visual impairment. It is a day to engage with a wider audience and showcase why eye health needs everybody's attention.
"World Sight Day is an important global moment for bringing eye health central to health care. The day provides an opportunity to raise public awareness on blindness and vision impairment and engage different stakeholders to act for the prevention of avoidable blindness. The fact is that 80 percent of blindness and vision impairments can be prevented or treated. Professionals in eye care, the government and the general public need to work together to ensure every person has access to eye care and change the odds in our country," says Dr Sara Varughese, President, VISION 2020: The Right to Sight - INDIA.
Every year, World Sight Day is observed in over 60 countries across the world around a universal theme. This year's theme is 'Stronger Together'.
Talking on the significance of the theme, Dr T P Das, Regional Chair, South East Asia, International Agency for Prevention of Blindness and Vice Chair, LVPEI elaborates, "Eyecare today needs divergent sections of the society, the care givers, the eye care industry and the policy makers. Together, we could build a self-sustainable system of affordable care that is accessible to all: "Stronger Together."
India shoulders the second highest number of visual impairment in the world at 62 million: 8 million cases of blindness and 54 million cases of low vision. However, 80 percent of blindness is preventable. Prevention and treatment of vision loss are among the most cost-effective and successful of all health interventions.
"If we have to achieve eliminating avoidable blindness, it is vital for all groups who are concerned with eye health - ophthalmologists, optometrists, ophthalmic nurses, donors, patients, hospitals and the government to join hands and VISION 2020 - INDIA is doing just that, bringing all stakeholders together on a common platform for a event like this," says Phanindra Babu Nukella, CEO, VISION 2020: The Right to Sight - INDIA.
VISION 2020: The Right to Sight - INDIA - a national initiative to eliminate avoidable blindness - is observing World Sight Day in Hyderabad this year. The programme this year is in collaboration with the National Programme for Control of Blindness, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India and also the State Programme for Control of Blindness, Government of Telangana. Members of VISION 2020 - INDIA at Hyderabad, LV Prasad Eye Institute, Pushpagiri Vitreo Retina Eye Institute, Operations Eyesight Universal, Pellucid and other members are also collaborating for the event.
The programme spread over two days on 12th and 13th October. On the day of World Sight Day - 13th October a two kms walk ' Walk for Vision' is being held to raise awareness on avoidable blindness and the need for better eye health among the public.
Such awareness walks help to raise the importance of eye health in the minds of general community and sensitize. Also, this opportunity can be utilised to raise the profile of eye health and advocate with the government for improved resource allocation/' said R Govind Hari, South Zone Representative of VISION 2020 - INDIA.
Note to Editor: VISION2020: The Right to Sight - INDIA a part of the global initiative of World Health Organisation and International Agency for Prevention of Blindness (IAPB), complements efforts of all agencies to eliminate the major causes of visual impairments in the country by year 2020. We have been working in the country since 2004 and are governed by a Board comprising Dr RP Centre [AllMS], INGOs, NGOs, along with special invitees from National Program for Control of Blindness (MoHFW), and other leading eye care institutions working on not-for-profit mode.