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Massive Cataract Surgery Campaign in Zambia, Kenya & Burkina Faso

A team of doctors in scrubs perform eye surgery on a patient lying down under a machine.
Performing cataract surgery in Zambia.

Key Points

  • Embracing the World conducted a cataract surgery campaign in Zambia for the third time in April 2019, in partnership with “Vision Without Borders,” Spain, Zambia’s Ministry of Health, and Amrita Zambia.
  • The team performed 518 surgeries (216 in Zambia, 232 in Kenya, 70 in Burkina Faso), offering free surgeries, glasses, and travel expenses coverage for patients with advanced eye conditions.
2 June 2019

Embracing the World has conducted eye camps in different countries in Africa in the last few years.

Given the success of the these camps, we were invited to conduct another massive cataract surgery campaign in collaboration with “Vision Without Borders”, Spain, and the Ophthalmological department of Zambia Ministry of Health, and Amrita Zambia from April 13 to April 21, 2019.

This was the third camp organized in Zambia and 140 operations were performed by our team at the provincial hospital of Kabwe, located to the north of the country.
The operations were completely free of charge, which included glasses, and the travel costs of the patients. A total of 518 surgeries were performed (216 in Zambia, 232 in Kenya and 70 in Burkina Faso)

Cataract surgery campaign in Zambia, Kenya & Burkina Faso

Our team consisted of two ophthalmologists, one operating room nurse, two optometrists, and one theater volunteer. In addition, there were two local specialists in ophthalmology and a couple of translators.

All the patients who attended the camp had visual acuity of less than 10%. Most of them could only see light perception or hand movement, which showed how advanced the cataract was. Though most of the interventions were for cataracts, we also performed capsulotomies and pterygiums during the camp.

Three doctors in scrubs stand with a boy with a bandage over his eye.
Doctors with a boy who received treatment for his eye injury, thus preventing loss of vision.

A 14-year-old boy (pictured above), who had an accident a week before the camp began, was operated on to cleanse the blood in the anterior chamber. He had not received any medical care and could have easily lost his eyesight had he not received the treatment. The smiles on the faces of the patients after the surgeries conveyed the gratitude and happiness they all felt in their hearts towards the team and organization. The efforts put in to organize the camp by our volunteers and well-wishers in Zambia was really inspiring.

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