Sight for sore eyes: ‘Maverick’ doctor who restored the vision of 100,000 people – CNN.com
– Kim Chun Son, 48, is overcome with emotion when Nepalese doctor Sanduk Ruit takes off her eye patch during a post operative examination in North Korea in 2005.
– Onlookers watch as Shanker Twayana, head technician of the Tilganga Institue Eye Bank, extracts the corneas from the donor on the banks of the Bagmati river in Nepal in 2000.
– Dr. Sanduk Ruit established Tilganga, an eye hospital in Kathmandu, Nepal with the late Australian ophthalmologist and philanthropist Fred Hollows in 1994.
In that time, the Nepalese doctor can make a small incision in his patient’s eye, remove the cloudy cataract impairing her vision and replace it with an inexpensive artificial lens.
In the past 30 years, Ruit has personally restored the sight of more than 100,000 people across Asia and Africa, and taught his rapid-fire technique to countless other eye surgeons in parts of the world as isolated as North Korea.
His patients suffer from eye conditions that are mostly preventable. But because of poverty and limited access to public health services they have been unable to seek treatment.
Their story is all too common in the developing world. An estimated 39 million people are blind worldwide, according to the World Health Organization. Of these, around 90% live in low-income areas and 80% suffer from conditions that can be prevented or cured.
Driven by a belief that the world’s poorest people deserve safe, affordable and high-quality eye care just as much as anyone else, Ruit has made it his mission to eradicate avoidable blindness.
Curated from Sight for sore eyes: ‘Maverick’ doctor who restored the vision of 100,000 people – CNN.com