Endeavours to restore eyesight – News24

Wednesday, 23 November
22 Nov
The Free State Department of Health has completed life-changing cataract surgeries to restore the eyesight of approximately 98 patients. These surgeries are a concerted effort by the department to reduce the number of patients on the waiting list for cataract surgeries, which is the leading cause of blindness globally.
Surgeries were performed in phases over four days – 12, 13, 19 and 20 November – at the Botshabelo Hospital and the Albert Nzula District Hospital in Trompsburg.
“The department is aware of the cataract backlogs and eye-care service needs in the province,” said Mondli Mvambi, spokesperson of the department.
“The department embarked on cataract marathons to improve eye-care services in all the districts of the Free State before the end of the 2022-’23 financial year.”
Mvambi said 33 patients underwent surgery at Albert Nzula, and 17 cancelled due to health concerns. The Botshabelo Hospital completed 65 cataract surgeries, as planned.
“The cancellation of other scheduled operations was due to health conditions such as hypertension, diabetes mellitus and complicated cataract conditions. Each patient’s condition is unique, and they are individually screened for eligibility even when they are preselected from the lists awaiting surgery. Those whose condition has changed at the time of a scheduled operation were then referred to the Universitas Academic Hospital for specialised care,” said Mvambi.
He said the estimated cost per single eye cataract operation was roughly R1 600.
“The department is hard at work to ensure that the much-needed capacity is built at the various health centres across the province, so that we are able to perform cataract surgeries and other eye-care services in local settings to curb the long waiting times for the beneficiaries to receive this essential service.”
22 Nov
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