BHUBANESWAR: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Sunday said Odisha is now in the process of developing a universal eye care programme to extend medical care to treatable and curable blind persons by setting up institutional mechanisms for screening and free treatment.
Speaking at an event organised by Drushti Daan, a non-profit organisation, for creating awareness on cornea donation, the CM said priority will be on use of technology to register all individuals with eye problems through a health web portal so that they can be issued eye health cards for further follow-up action.
Naveen hailed the initiative taken by Drushti Daan for setting up an eye bank and promoting eye donation across the State. ‘’While only 10 corneas were being collected annually before 2007, now the collection has reached 1,300 per year,’’ he said.
The Chief Minister said the State Government would ensure that students who are detected with eye problems are treated free of cost. More than one lakh spectacles will be distributed to students with refractory errors this year under Bal Jyoti programme, he said.
So far, Drushti Daan has achieved a feat of collecting 5,000 corneas and annual retrieval of more than 1,000 corneas.