Project ‘ROPES’ to help in eye surgeries for underprivileged children

Rajan Eye Care Hospital’s chairman and managing director Mohan Rajan (far left) at the launch of the ROPES project in Chennai   | Photo Credit: SRINIVASAN KV

Rotary Paediatric Eye Surgery Project (ROPES), an initiative to conduct surgeries free of cost for eye disorders for children from underprivileged backgrounds, was launched on Saturday by Rajan Eye Care Hospital (RECH) in association with the Rotary Club of Madras (RCM) T. Nagar, Chennai Vision Charitable Trust and Varshini Illam Trust.

Mohan Rajan, chairman and medical director, RECH, said that childhood visual impairment was a huge burden in India. Pointing out that a number of causes like congenital cataracts, retinopathy of prematurity and glaucoma could lead to blindness, he said that complex surgeries required for these disorders were often expensive and hence unaffordable for those below the poverty line.

Three children have already undergone surgery under the project. This includes a 1.5-year-old boy who was found abandoned in a bush and later handed over by government authorities to Varshini Illam Trust, a recognised adoption home.

P.N. Vasudevan, one of the trustees of the home, said that the boy had complete loss of sight in his left eye probably due to an injury he incurred when he was abandoned. “The cornea was largely white and his eye was bulging out. The boy was constantly crying, perhaps due to the pain,” he said. Stating that the boy could not undergo surgery for several months due to the COVID-19 lockdown, he thanked RECH for readily agreeing to perform the complex surgery.

Muthu Palaniappan, governor, Rotary International District 3232, who launched the project, said that the impact the project will have on the lives of these children was huge. He spoke about project Orange being undertaken by his Rotary district, which aims to set up 200 vision centres in Tamil Nadu, with the objective of moving towards complete prevention of avoidable vision loss.

C.K. Gariyali, a retired IAS officer and a trustee of Varshini Illam Trust, John Felix, trustee, Varshini Illam Trust, Syhammkumar, president, RCM T. Nagar, and Sujatha Mohan, executive medical director, RECH also spoke

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Printable version | Apr 11, 2021 1:38:54 AM |

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