The Hanoi Department of Health in coordination with Helen Keller International (HKI) will provide eye check-ups for some 10,000 people aged 45 or more in the capital city’s Quoc Oai district from now to September 2015.

The department said the activity is part of a HKI project entitled “Establishing vision entrepreneurs through community based eye care system in rural communities of Hanoi ”. The project, funded by Grand Challenges Canada, is the first of its kind to be piloted in Vietnam .

In this project, HKI will train collaborators in doing basic visual acuity screening and conduct communication activities to raise public awareness of the issue.

It is also expected to give financial support to some 4,000 people to buy qualified eyeglasses.

Presbyopia is a significant cause of avoidable visual impairment for those of old age.
Statistics show that about one billion people in the world suffer from vision impairment due to uncorrected presbyopia and 98 percent of them live in less developed countries.

Up to 74 percent of presbyopia sufferers in Southeast Asian countries, including Vietnam , are yet to wear suitable spectacles.

HKI is an international non-governmental organisation with the mission of saving the sight and lives of the most vulnerable and disadvantaged by combating the causes and consequences of blindness and malnutrition.-VNA