All the district and taluka level hospitals in the state have been provided with the infrastructure and advanced equipment for cataract surgery.
Gujarat is the first state to provide free eye-lenses
Gujarat is committed to realize the dream of our Hon’ble Prime Minister to create a Cataract-free nation
The target is to reduce the blindness rate to 0.25% by the year 2025
In the National Blindness and Visual Impairment Control Program, under the school health check-up program, spectacles are distributed free of cost to the defective children up to the age of 18 years by examining their vision.
For healthy vision, adopt healthy food cooked from natural farming produce under “Prevention is better than cure”.
Gandhinagar, Saturday: Gujarat Chief Minister Mr. Bhupendra Patel, while launching the Cataract-Blindness free Gujarat Campaign from Gandhinagar, has set a target to reduce the blindness rate in the state to 0.25% by the year 2025.
In this regard, the Chief Minister said that, National Blindness and Vision Defect Control Program is implemented in the state. According to a survey conducted in Gujarat in 2014, the rate of blindness which was 0.7 percent has come down to 0.36 percent in 2018-19.
Gujarat Chief Minister launched this state-wide campaign of Cataract-Blindness Free Gujarat in the presence of the Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare, Smt. Nimisha Suthar. MLA Mr. Shambhuji Thakor, Mayor of Gandhinagar Mr. Hitesh Makwana, Deputy Mayor Mr. Pradyumnasinh Gohil, District Panchayat President as well as other officials were also present at the occassion.
The Chief Minister interacted with the beneficiaries who came for eye and cataract check-ups and also witnessed the treatment being done by the ophthalmologists. He said that, the problem of cataract usually occurs after the age of 50 years. This can be treated with simple surgery by putting eye lenses.
He further said that for this purpose, the health department has provided infrastructure and state-of-the-art equipment for cataract surgery in all district level as well as taluka level hospitals.
The Chief Minister also added that by achieving the rate of more than 1000 cataract operation per million populations, Gujarat has been in the forefront. Usually, the operations of putting eye lenses through Phaco emulsification cost 10 to 50 thousand rupees in private hospitals, but such operations are performed free of cost in the government hospitals of Gujarat. Besides, Gujarat is the only state in the country to provide free hydrophobic intraocular lenses.
The Chief Minister further said that Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi has decided to create a cataract-free nation by doing surgery of people who are blind due to cataract across the country. Gujarat is fully committed in fulfilling this dream of our Prime Minister.
He said that under this campaign of Cataract-Blind Free Gujarat, it is planned to operate all those people free of cost in government hospitals and voluntary organizations in the state who are blind due to cataract in both eyes i.e. their eyesight is less than 3 meters in both eyes. He also said that, under the National Blindness and Visual Impairment Control Program, spectacles are distributed free of cost to all children up to the age of 18 years having visual impairment. These children are given free spectacles after examining their vision in the school health program.
The Chief Minister said that healthy food is also important for healthy vision. He said that the Prime Minister gave a clarion call to adopt Natural farming which is free from chemical fertilizers. Let us all consume the food grown through natural farming and create a healthy Gujarat through healthy food.
Mr. Bhupendra Patel also lauded all the service personnel who are providing their services, their time and contribution in this campaign.
Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Smt. Nimisha Suthar said that Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi gave a clarion call to provide new eyesight to the citizens across the country through National Blindness and Vision Defect Control Program. I am confident that Gujarat will show a new direction to the country in this regard.
She said that cataracts are more common in people over the age of 50. The state government will make efforts to create cataract-free Gujarat by finding such citizens through screening of the remotest places of the state and performing their cataract surgery free of cost.
Along with the state government, voluntary organizations are also doing great job in cataract operations. She congratulated them and appealed them to co-operate more in this campaign.
She further added that vision of our children is also examined under the school health program held every year and free spectacles are also distributed to the needy children every year free of cost.
Additional Chief Secretary of the Department of Health Mr. Manoj Aggarwal said that visual impairment occurs with age. Cataract surgery is required after the age of 50. If the surgery is not performed at proper time, there are chances that the person becomes blind. A special campaign has been launched by the state government to make Gujarat free from cataract and blindness. In this campaign, the ASHA workers and the health team will reach to each and every citizen, carry out their eye check up and take the needy people to the voluntary organizations / hospitals for their treatment. For this, the ASHA women workers will be given assistance of Rs.350 by the state government.
Health Commissioner Mr. Jai Prakash Shivahare welcomed all. At the launch of this campaign, Additional Chief Secretary of the Department of Health Mr. Manoj Aggarwal, National Health Mission Director Smt. Remya Mohan, Collector Mr. Kuldeep Arya, Municipal Commissioner Mr. Dhaval Patel, including beneficiaries, Doctors and health workers of Gandhinagar city and district officials were also present.
Source: Information Department, Gujarat