Almost one million people in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in Central Africa suffer from blindness, and one out of fifty are living with severe visual impairment. Cataracts and glaucoma are the most common causes of blindness in the Congo. Sadly, there is just one ophthalmologist out of 1.4 million inhabitants in the Congo, which is equivalent to one ophthalmologist per 10,000 inhabitants in Belgium
As part of our continuing mission to create an Ansell-protected world, Ansell is honored to support Ophthalmology Worldwide (OWW). This Belgian organization volunteers dedicate its services to people living in Congo. In February, Ansell donated much-needed surgical and examination gloves to help protect ophthalmologists, opticians, and nurses performing their missions in Nioki, a secluded town in the May-Ndombe province, 400 kilometers from Kinshasa.
OWW's mission is to prevent and treat eye diseases, raise awareness of eye hygiene and treatments to the local population, and distribute eyeglasses to reduce visual impairment. OWW volunteers also teach and assist local Congolese hospital staff in the various aspects of eye care and provide training to local healthcare professionals to ensure continuity of care. During the two-week-long mission, from February 11 to 27, Ansell's PPE donations assisted OWW in performing at least 1,500 consultations and 250 surgeries.
The number of blind and partially sighted people in Congo relative to its population is unimaginable to those of us living with readily accessible healthcare. Many patients can be helped with surgery, eyeglasses, or medication. Even the most basic support can make a huge difference. Ansell is proud that our products are helping to change lives for the better. #AnsellProtects
Submitted by Carine Clur, Sr Director, QARA