Nepal: Enhancing Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology
The Himalayan Cataract Project was co-founded in 1995 to support and expand eye care at the Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology (TIO) in Kathmandu, Nepal. Today, TIO serves over 400,000 patients annually through its main hospital in Kathmandu, 16 Satellite Eye Centers througout rural Nepal, and through its many outreaches both domestically and abroad. Beyond direct service, TIO serves as a major ophthalmic training center for all levels of personnel, from community health workers to subspecialty ophthalmologists. HCP sends dozens of trainees from all over the world for training at Tilganga. TIO is also home to the Fred Hollows Intraocular Lens Lab which produces affordable intraocular lenses and other surgical consumables and has the only Refractive Surgery Unit that provides elective laser surgery.
In 2016, staff from TIO and partnering CEHs and CEC conducted a total of 25 HCP-supported outreach events (17 in Nepal and 8 internationally), during which 5,334 cataract surgeries were performed. International outreaches took place in India, Myanmar, and Bhutan, during which a surgical team from TIO traveled to remote areas to perform cataract surgeries and train local eye care professionals. Additionally, HCP provided 17 training opportunities for ophthalmic personnel from Nepal, including 2 observerships, 2 sub-specialists, 12 ICO workshop participants and conference attendees. In 2017, HCP will continue support for direct service, training, and infrastructure, and plans to begin construction on trainee housing at the Hetauda Community Eye Hospital to further support ophthalmic education in Nepal.