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SYSU’s Zhongshan Ophthalmology Center Assists in Creating a “Cateract-free Zone” in Mountainous Areas of East Guangdong Province

Last updated :2009-06-08

Guangzhou, June 5, 2009 (Xinhuanet) - More than 30 Ophthalmologists from ZhongShan Ophthalmic Center and the First Affiliated Hospital of SYSU gathered in the mountainous areas of East Guangdong Province to assist Dongyuan County in creating a “Cateract -free Zone”, performing free cataract operations for 1,500 local indigent farmers whose blindness were caused by cataract.

Due to technical deficiencies, the public hospitals in the rural areas of East Guangdong Province could hardly provide any basic services in ophthalmology. There are about 550,000 people in Dongyuan County. Taking the survey data into account-an annual increase of 0.24% of cataract-blind, there will be more than 1,300 cases of cataract-blind each year. As more and more patients are been neglected of treatment, Dongyuan County is confronted with an arduous task in the prevention of blindness.

SYSU had dispatched a solid medical team to East Guangdong Province, reaching out to the county Party Committee and county government of Dongyuan County for a “ Cataract-free Zone”. In addition to offering free cataract surgery for 1,500 local indigent farmers who were cataract-blind, it will also provide training for the local medical team in the prevention and treatment of blindness and set up a “Low Vision Rehabilitation Technology Center- Dongyuan Branch”. The “zero cost surgery” will save nearly 4 million yuan immediately for patients in this rural area.

Prof. Liu Yizhi, Party secretary of ZhongShan Ophthalmic Center and ophthalmic specialist, performed the first cataract surgery. He said, well trained ophthalmic surgeons tend to centralize in three- stars hospitals in big cities, while basic medical care units have a deficiency in ophthalmic technology with low ratio of cataract surgery, and are unable to fulfill demands of the mass cataract patients to restore their eye sight. Thus, our hospital will not only organized medical teams to assist the rural area in promoting the “brightness actions”, but will also spare no effort to promote the technology of preventing and treating cataract, training the medical technology strength for the local people by disseminating, associating and leading, and creating a highly efficient and dedicated medical team to assist in the prevention and treatment efforts of cataract in Dongyuan.