2017 IAPB Council of Members (CoM)-South East Asia Day
The 2017 IAPB Council of Members meeting was held in Kathmandu, Nepal, on 17-18 September, preceded by the IAPB Working Groups, Committees and Board meetings on 15-16 September. The Program was jointly hosted by Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology (TIO) and Nepal Netra Jyoti Sang (NNJS).
Honorable Dr. Ram Baran Yadav, the first and former President of the Federal Republic of Nepal, inaugurated ceremony of the IAPB Council of Members on 17th September 2017.
Bob McMullan, President IAPB, Dr. Kiran Regmi, Secretary MoH Nepal, Peter Ackland, CEO IAPB, Taraprasad Das, Regional Chair, IAPB, Prof.Dr.Sanduk Ruit Executive TIO, Tirtha Mishra, President, NNJS, Nepal, Ivo Kocur, WHO/Geneva, Dr. Patanjali Nayar , Nepal have expressed their views on set the tone for the day and Dr. Madan Upadhyay BP Eye Foundation gave a impressive presentation on Where we are and Where we want to be.
At IAPB Council of Members’ meeting the South East Asia Day was attended by almost 300 participants from over 70 organizations throughout the globe. It is considered as one of the biggest IAPB CoM meeting. The meeting was divided into seven sessions: Setting the tone, Cataract, Glaucoma, Uncorrected Refractive Error, Diabetic Retinopathy, Cornea and Eye Banking and Data session. IAPB country chair and representatives of Ministry of Health of all eleven countries of SEA region were invited and actively participated in this meeting. For the first time on the initiation of Tilganga representatives from DPR Korea also attended and presented on the eye care service situation of their country.
Dr. Reeta Gurung, Dr. Suman Thapa and Dr. Indira Poudyal have presented paper on Cataract and Glaucoma respectively. Dr. Reeta Gurung was one of the panelists in Addressing Corneal Blindness and Eye Banking in SEA. Dr. Raba Thapa and Dr. Indira Paudyal were also one of the panelists on Glaucoma and Diabetic Retinopathy respectively.
In each topic the presentations were focused on: Magnitude of the problem, gap in terms of output, outcome, human and financial resources, ongoing support from IAPB members, Ministry of Health and future commitments and suggested solutions to the prominent issues identified. The eminent speakers in related topics, IAPB members, Ministry of health representative and public health experts participated in presentation and panel discussion in each topic. In summary it has been realized that there has been significant progress, in terms of service outputs, human resource development and scientific advancement in treatment has been made in eye care service in past few decades. Trachoma and Vitamin A deficiency (VADX) used to be significant cause of blindness in the past has been eliminated and in the verge of elimination process in many countries of the region. However, much needs to be done for emerging issues such as diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma and uncorrected refractive error along with persistent issues of cataract blindness in the region.
The evidences on magnitude and cause of problem, impact, service coverage along with quality of services are considered very important to plan future course of eye care services. More focus in operational research and data collection system need to be prioritized along with service delivery was realized.
All eye health heroes were felicitated during this meeting.
There was strong commitment from all stakeholders such as IAPB members, Ministry of Health and International partners such as WHO and IAPB were expressed in the meeting. The SEA day was very tightly scheduled with many important agendas successfully accomplished with information on eye care service situation and future commitment to eye health sharing from each country of the region.