Eye Care Everywhere: The Vision Van Hits the Road

Since March 2020, health care providers around the world have prioritized coronavirus response measures. This has delayed many urgent eye surgeries. But if eye conditions are neglected, they can cause irreparable damage, resulting in severe vision loss or blindness.

To tackle this new challenge, Orbis and our partners have doubled down in countries like India. We've taken our work to the streets, and in some cases, door-to-door.

The Vision Van Hits the Road

Many people in India were hesitant to visit the hospital for eye care while coronavirus cases were surging. But allowing people who have critical and urgent eye conditions to forgo treatment simply wasn’t an option. Together with our partners at Akhand Jyoti Eye Hospital, we reimagined how to deliver eye care to people in dire need despite widespread coronavirus lockdowns.

Essential to bringing eye care everywhere, especially during global lockdowns, was the Vision Van. This is a mobile clinic designed to bring quality eye care to as many people as possible. Even in the midst of a global pandemic.

The Vision Van played a vital part in helping to combat the fact that many people were confined to their homes due to lockdowns and school closures. A team of three staff members were able to pilot door-to-door screenings in Narayanpur village, making sure to take all necessary safety precautions to avoid the spread of coronavirus.

The Vision Van visits local communities in India, carrying out eye screenings

Soon, our team was taking eye care everywhere by coordinating screening activities in the village each day. Children with conditions that required surgery were referred to the hospital, and children with refractive errors such as nearsightedness and farsightedness were referred for a second eye exam at the Vision Van.

Staffed with professional optometrists and medical assistants and outfitted with state-of-the-art equipment, the Vision Van allows us to bring quality eye care anywhere, critical in rural areas or places where services are scarce.

Thanks to Orbis’s generous supporters, this innovative mobile screening and treatment facility has filled a crucial gap in eye care services during this global pandemic. In the first month alone, we conducted nearly 1,000 screenings for children, with 25 of them referred to the hospital for surgery and 49 prescribed a pair of glasses.

Delivering Sight-Saving Care Everywhere

Since 2016, Orbis has worked with AJEH, Eastern India’s largest eye hospital, to provide the skills, resources and knowledge needed to deliver pediatric eye care to 8.8 million children across six districts in India.

Orbis staff work with AJEH to train doctors, strengthen hospital operations, and expand outreach efforts through remote vision centers. In just five years of partnership, we have established 33 children’s eye centers across India’s rural communities, places that would otherwise not have access to life-changing eye care.

At Orbis, we couldn’t be more proud of our team in India over the last two decades. This year especially, our supporters and local partners have gone to great lengths to ensure children can access the urgent care they need through innovative initiatives like the Vision Van, despite challenging new barriers.

Your extraordinary generosity and commitment is unparalleled—and we know children who have been treated and their families are just as grateful as we are!

Many children, however, still need your help to receive the urgent eye care they need. Please consider a gift today to ensure Orbis can keep our Vision Van on the road and bring eye care everywhere even in the face of a global pandemic.

Donate today and help keep our Vision Van on the road

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