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Countess of Wessex Visits the Flying Eye Hospital

November 2017

The Countess of Wessex visited the Flying Eye Hospital and two partner hospitals during her tour of Bangladesh to help raise awareness of avoidable blindness.

The Countess of Wessex has been a patron for the International Association for the Prevention of Blindness since 2003 and has visited our sight saving projects and the Flying Eye Hospital a number of times over the years.

Countess Of Wessex watches an eye test at the Islamia Eye Institute

Countess of Wessex conducts an eye test at the Ispahani Islamia Eye Institute

The Flying Eye Hospital is currently in Bangladesh where our amazing volunteers will be providing a 2 week ophthalmic training programme and raising awareness of the importance of good quality eye care. 

The Countess of Wessex took the time to meet Orbis staff, volunteers, local eye health specialists and young children during her tour of our work aboard the Flying Eye Hospital and at our partner hospitals - the Ispahani Islamia Eye Institute and the Chittagong Eye Infirmary & Training Complex. 

Bangladesh has a population of 164.9 million, 40% of whom are children. According the World Health Organization (WHO) there are more than 50,000 blind children with around 20,000 being as a result of avoidable causes. Approximately 1.3 million children aged between 5 - 15 have refractive error and around 150,000 have low vision – of which almost half of cases are treatable.  

The tour was organised as part of Qatar Creating Vision with the support of Qatar Fund for Development. 

The Countess was even reacquainted with nurse Mammoth Adhikary, who she met in the Ispahani Islamia Eye Institute in 2009. Mammoth was involved in the very first Orbis Flying Eye Hospital programme in Bangladesh back in 1985 and is now Head Nurse at the hospital.

Countess of Wessex meeting Mammoth Adhikary, Flying Eye Hospital nurse from 1985, now head nurse at Islamia

Countess of Wessex is reacquainted with an old friend

We'd like to extend a big thank you to the Countess and her team for all their help and support raising awareness of avoidable blindness.  

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