For the last six years, AMDA’s ophthalmologic project in Mongolia has been one of its most viable initiatives to date. Hoping to provide better eye-care for the people in Mongolia, the project primarily focuses on the institutionalization of children’s eye checkup: a medical system which is thought to be requisite in uplifting the visual health of Mongolian people from an early age.
This year, two Japanese eye specialists (orthoptists) as well as AMDA President, Dr. Shigeru Suganami and Dr. Don Lau, the chairperson of AMDA Singapore with couple of others visited the village of Guchin Us, Övörkhangai located in the 500 km southwest of Ulaanbaatar, the capital.
The team organized children’s eye checkup, with some adults being examined upon request, which included 167 pre-school and primary-school children as well as 54 secondary-school students and adults.
Among the pre-school children, following cases were found: external strabismus (4), inner strabismus (3), nystagmus (1), damaged cornea (1). The checkup revealed that while 124 children had good eye-sight, 16 needed some sort of eye care. 15 went through the deviation test after getting the eye drops, and as a result 13 children got the glasses prescribed. Likewise, it was found that four out of 17 secondary-school students were in need of glasses. As for adults, 37 of them were examined on visual distortion, myopia and hyperopia
September, AMDA collaborated with Mongolia Ophthalmology Association to hold a forum titled, “Children’s Eye Problems in Mongolia” at Mongolian Ministry of Health. Attended by the vice health minister, Her Excellency Ms. L. Byambasuren, and the health bureau chief, Dr. Enkhbold, the forum reached consensus on having three-pillar goals, namely, establishing a national “children’s eye” day, institutionalization of the optometrists, and to hold an annual conference in this realm. In addition, the program is also willing to collaborate with local family doctors as family medicine plays an essential role in Mongolian society. AMDA believes that family doctors could help promote the importance and understanding of children’s eye checkup.
The forum was featured in the leading local newspaper which marked a big step forward in gaining social recognition on this issue.
Heading for its seventh year, an array of programs and efforts are tangibly bearing fruit. AMDA hopes to extend this bond of trust and friendship with the people of Mongolia, doing what it can to contribute to their quality of life.