When it comes to Ophthalmology nowadays most people think about fashionable glasses or laser surgery to correct sight. Some people are getting a bit more concerned the older they become about Cataract, Glaucoma or macular degeneration. It literally stops there.
Only very few know that cataracts are the number one reason for global blindness or that cataract surgery is the most performed surgery in the world? Today nearly 300 million people are visually impaired worldwide and of course 90% living in low income countries. Cataract remains the leading cause of blindness, it is however avoidable. Glaucoma for example accounts for 14% of worldwide blindness and is the leading cause for irreversible blindness in the world.
The socioeconomic impact this has on an individual, community and/or a country is a huge. This enormous burden is yet very hard to tackle.
Raising awareness and global action in international ophthalmology is an important task. An increasingly ageing population also in low income settings does not ease the problem. Currently used instruments, therapies and strategies need to be constantly over viewed and adapted. Moreover, modern technologies must be used wherever possible to improve not only therapies but also strategies to battle sight threatening health issues. Telemedicine or mobile phones in eye care have been recently shown to be very useful but there is still a lot of work ahead.
|Dolzan Silvio||Chairman||Radio Télevision Suisse||Switzerland|
|Omegova Anastasia ||Chairman||Russian Federation|
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|Christofori-Khada Monika||Barriers to E-Health||Swiss Red Cross||Switzerland|
|Harding-Esch Emma||Tropical Data: Using the Digital Revolution for the Elimination of Neglected Tropical Diseases||LSHTM||UK|
|Mader Jacques||Challenges and opportunities for ophthalmology in the sustainable development agenda?||SDC||Switzerland|