Charting new frontiers of hope in Pakistan

Chairman, National Committee for the Prevention of Blindness
Community eye health / International Centre for Eye Health 01/2008; 20(64):65.
Source: PubMed

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    • "However, plans without resources are of little impact and so many VISION 2020 stakeholders have sought to advocate for increased contributions from national governments, Official Development Assistance, and other major funders. Significant increased allocations by national governments have been welcomed in India,[8] Pakistan,[24] and more recently in China.[6] While many bilateral and multilateral donors have supported the APOC program only the Australian Government has made significant funding ($65 million approx) to VISION 2020 more broadly through its Australia Blindness Initiative. "
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    ABSTRACT: In the first 12 years of VISION 2020 sound programmatic approaches have been developed that are capable of delivering equitable eye health services to even the most remote and impoverished communities. A body of evidence around the economic arguments for investment in eye health has been developed that has fuelled successful advocacy work resulting in supportive high level policy statements. More than a 100 national plans to achieve the elimination of avoidable blindness have been developed and some notable contributions made from the corporate and government sectors to resource eye health programs. Good progress has been made to control infectious blinding diseases and at the very least there is anecdotal evidence to suggest that the global increase in the prevalence of blindness and visual impairment has been reversed in recent years, despite the ever increasing and more elderly global population. However if we are to achieve the goal of VISION 2020 we require a considerable scaling up of current efforts-this will depend on our future success in two key areas: i) Successful advocacy and engagement at individual country level to secure significantly enhanced national government commitment to financing their own VISION 2020 plans.ii) A new approach to VISION 2020 thinking that integrates eye health into health system development and develops new partnerships with wider health development initiatives.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2012 · Indian Journal of Ophthalmology
    • "In 2005 the Pakistani Government allocated $51 million for prevention of blindness for 5 years. Additionally, the government upgraded eye departments in 27 teaching, 63 districts and 147 subdistrict Hospitals and a total of 2,719 posts were created for eye care at teaching hospital, district and sub-district levels.16 Furthermore, primary eye care was recognized as a prevention and health promotion strategy and included within the health system. "
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    ABSTRACT: The global initiative for the elimination of avoidable blindness by the year 2020-(VISION 2020- The Right to Sight), established in 1999, is a partnership of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), governments, bilateral organizations, corporate bodies and the World Health Organization. The goal is to eliminate the major causes of avoidable blindness by the year 2020. Significant progress has been made in the last decade. For example, the adoption of three major World Health Assembly resolutions (WHA 56.26, 59.25 and 62.1) requesting governments to increase support and funding for the prevention of blindness and eye care. Additionally, the approval of the VISION 2020 declaration, development of plans and establishment of prevention of blindness committees and a designation of a coordinator by most participating countries represent other major achievements. Furthermore there has been increased political and professional commitment to the prevention of visual impairment and an increase in the provision of high-quality, sustainable eye care. Most of these achievements have been attributed to the advocacy efforts of VISION 2020 at the international level. The full success of this global initiative will likely depend on the extent to which the WHA resolutions are implemented in each country. However, most ratifying countries have not moved forward with implementation of these resolutions. To date, only few countries have shown consistent government support and funding for eye care pursuant to the resolutions. One of the main reasons for this may be inadequate and inappropriate advocacy for eye care at the national level. As such it is believed that the success of VISION 2020 in the next decade will depend on intense advocacy campaigns at national levels. This review identified some of the countries and health programs that have had fruitful advocacy efforts, to determine the factors that dictated success. The review highlights the factors of successful advocacy in two countries (Australia and Pakistan) that secured continued government support. The review further explores the achievements of the HIV/AIDs control network advocacy in securing global and national government support. Common factors for successful advocacy at the national level were identified to include generation of evidence data and effective utilization of the data with an appropriate forum and media to develop a credible relationship with prominent decision makers. Aligning eye care programming to the broad health and development agendas was a useful advocacy effort. Also a broad all-encompassing coalition of all stakeholders provides a solid platform for effective and persistent advocacy for government support of eye care.
    No preview · Article · Mar 2012 · Middle East African journal of ophthalmology
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    ABSTRACT: In many settings, women make up a sizeable part of the eye health workforce, whether as distributors of ivermectin for onchocerciasis control, surgeons for trichaisis, ophthalmic nurses and nurse assistants, cataract surgeons, or ophthalmologists. There is a small, but growing, body of literature that suggests that, in the eye health care workforce, men and women may not be supported and paid equally and may not have similar performance levels. Why is this, and what can we do?
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2009
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