Akhand Jyoti Eye Hospital (AJEH)
Country of Operation
- Yugrishi Shriram Sharma Acharya Charitable Trust (YSSACT)Not-for-profit
SummaryAkhand Jyoti Eye Hospital (AJEH) is Bihar's largest eye hospital and is the pilot project of Yugrishi Shriram Sharma Acharya Charitable Trust (YSSACT).
With over 6.5 million blind people, India is a country that needs large-scale eye care services. Fortunately, most of this blindness is curable and with timely intervention. There is a backlog of 1 million blind people in Bihar (one of India’s poorest and most marginalized state) whereby it lags behind in all aspects of human well being. Every year 100,000 people get added to the above tally. Poor infrastructure, illiteracy and poverty are barriers. Surgical capacity in Bihar does not match the workload. Inconsistent quality standards and a lack of trained manpower are stumbling blocks. Accessibility and affordability are major causes of concern.
Key program components
Akhand Jyoti runs a highly successful eye hospital and rural outreach prevention program that aims to reduce the backlog of surgeries to cure blindness in Bihar by 75% in the next 5 years. The 250-bedded hospital offers primary and secondary level of eye care, including full eye screening, prescription and supply of low cost spectacles, diagnostic evaluation, cataract surgery and other minor surgical procedures. In addition to the main hospital, Akhan Jyoti operates two smaller eye care centers in Patna and Siwan, with a 50 and 40 bed capacity respectively. The hospital’s financial model combines income from fee-paying patients with grant subsidy. It aims to provide 2/3 of all services for free. In 2011, 79% of adults and 82% of children received free services. Outreach is the core activity of the organization. It comprises of camps, village door to door activities and school screening. The hospital has a 55 strong outreach team and a large volunteer base. Understanding the need to train local staff to work in the hospitals, Akhand Jyoti has focused on girls from at-risk communities and runs a parallel education and empowerment program for girls who will eventually have the opportunity to be trained and employed as skilled nurses.
During 2011, Akhand Jyoti saw 207,565 patients and performed 47,136 surgeries.