Doctors conduct an eye surgery (Photo: baoninhthuan.com.vn)

Ninh Thuan (VNA) – About 150 patients with cataracts in the south central province of Ninh Thuan have received free surgeries provided by the Asia Prevention of Blindness Association (APBA) and the province’s eye hospital.

Hospital Director Pham Van Hai said most of the beneficiaries were low-income earners. All surgery and medicine costs, totaling 1.2 billion VND (53,300 USD), were funded by the APBA and his hospital.

The surgeries on November 18 and 19 were a boon to cataracts patients as eye surgery is expensive.

It was also a chance for local medical workers to gain more experience and learn about advanced techniques in cataracts treatment, Hai added.

The number of blind people over 50 years old in Vietnam has continued to drop, from 443,700 in 2000 to 329,300 in 2015. The total number of the blind is about 378,700.

Cataracts are the cause of blindness in 74 percent of cases, Director of the Central Eye Hospital Nguyen Xuan Hiep said at the national ophthalmological conference in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho last October.-VNA