Global initiative for the elimination of avoidable blindness
Future editions of the Journal of Community Eye Health will devote one page to the Global Initiative for the Elimination of Avoidable Blindness. This important initiative is introduced as our lead article by Dr Bjorn Thylefors, Director, Programme for the Prevention of Blindness and Deafness, World Health Organization (WHO PBD).
Discussions involving the WHO PBD and the Task Force of Non-Governmental Development Organisations has resulted in a document outlining objectives, strategies, indicators and targets until the year 2020 AD, with emphasis on disease control, human resource development and infrastructure and appropriate technology.
Cataract is the most common cause of blindness worldwide and we publish three reports from India, two on Cataract Surgical Coverage and one on Counselling for Cataract Surgery. India has pioneered much in the field of eye care programmes, particularly in the provision of high volume cataract surgical services. Since we have published a 4-page Indian Supplement (see back page) we have missed some of the excellent articles which have been circulated in India alone. This issue redresses that situation.
A significant challenge for cataract surgeons in developing countries is the creation of the necessary surgical environment and skills to facilitate intraocular lens (IOL) implant surgery. Allen Foster and Albrecht Hennig discuss the option of using anterior chamber IOLs as an alternative to the proven technique of posterior chamber IOL surgery. This report is based on ongoing studies at Lahan Eye Hospital in Nepal. We look forward to publishing the major findings of the 2-5 year study which should reach its conclusions in 1998.