Fred Hollows Foundation: Vietnam Blindness Prevention Program
Country of Operation
- The Fred Hollows FoundationNot-for-profit
Target income level
- Bottom 20%
- Lower-middle income (20-40%)
- Middle-income (40-60%)
SummaryFred Hollows Foundation implements a variety of programs to combat vision impairment in Vietnam. The training program initiated by The Foundation in 1993 to train hundreds of surgeons to perform modern sight-restoring cataract surgery (with IOLs) in collaboration with the Vietnam National Institute.
Key program components
The majority of projects take a comprehensive approach to blindness prevention, including: * disease control services, including prevention and treatment of the leading causes of blindness such as cataract, glaucoma, trachoma, refractive error and pediatric eye complications * improving the affordability of cataract surgery and provision of a subsidy for poor patients to receive free cataract surgery * strengthening of referral pathways from the village to the provincial level for patients to access eye care advice and treatment * raising community awareness on the prevention and treatment of eye disease through multi-media channels, which includes the production of pamphlets, billboards, radio, television commercials and documentaries as well as theatrical performances in villages * infrastructure development, including construction of eye units or hospitals and provision of necessary medical equipment * human resource development, including training of eye surgeons and other ophthalmic personnel, village health volunteers and hospital administration and management staff at various levels of the health system The Foundation maintains it's strong partnership with the Vietnam National Institute of Ophthalmology (VNIO) in Hanoi. Between 1993 and 1999, the Foundation trained and equipped 322 eye surgeons from throughout Vietnam in the four large centres of Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Hue and Da Nang City. This initial work was instrumental in making modern cataract surgery the norm in Vietnam. In 2000 seven surgeons were trained to perform sutureless cataract surgery, who have helped to spread the technique throughout Vietnam, by teaching other doctors in the other provinces.
The Fred Hollows Foundation has worked in Vietnam since 1993 after Professor Fred Hollows first visited the country in early 1992. Today, the Foundation's Vietnam Blindness Prevention Program operates in 10 provinces in the central, southern and central highland regions of Central Vietnam.