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There is no greater courage than to be always truthful - the Mother 
Editorial

The year has been of several milestones at Aravind – the much-awaited opening of Aravind-Chennai, LAICO’s silver jubilee and the start of Dr. V’s birth centenary year. Aravind forayed into the metro city on September 30. The outpatient services were started a week earlier and saw good response from the public. On the first day of operations, the hospital catered to over 330 patients.

The ninth Dr. G. venkataswamy Endowment Award was conferred upon Dr.  Alfred Sommer in appreciation of his outstanding contributions to the prevention of blindness in the developing world. At the spectacular ceremony held at Dr. G. Venkataswamy Eye Research Institute, Dr. Sommer delivered the oration highlighting the various aspects of his landmark research studies. 

Aravind has just stepped into the birth centenary year of its legendary founder, Dr. G. Venkataswamy. The culmination of the centenary celebrations is scheduled during the October Summit 2018. As a fitting tribute to this noble soul on this special occasion, Aravind has committed itself to taking up several initiatives, during the course of the year that will help improve eye care service delivery. 

Last month too, several of Aravind staff won laurels in various prestigious fora. News about these and many more feature in this issue.



AWARDS AND ACCOLADES
TANSA Award for Dr. P. Sundaresan
Chennai, September 25, 2017

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Dr. P. Sundaresan, Senior scientist, AMRF was presented with the Tamil Nadu Scientist award for the year 2013 by the Tamil Nadu State Council for Science and Technology. Minister for Higher Education, Govt. of Tamil Nadu presented the award at the function held at Anna University in Chennai.  
Fifth Asia Pacific HIMSS-Elsevier Digital Healthcare Award 2017 for Aravind-Pondicherry
Singapore, September 11-14, 2017

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The HIMSS-Elsevier Digital Healthcare Award is a global platform recognizing outstanding achievements and innovations in the usage of health information and technology, to advance patient care and safety. Aravind Eye Hospital, Pondicherry won the award in the category, Outstanding ICT Innovation for its fundus on phone for rural eye care. The award ceremony was organised at Sands Expo and Convention Centre in Singapore from September 11-14, 2017. Fundus on Phone for Rural Eye Care’ demonstrated how using smartphones in healthcare can provide greater access to healthcare and lead to cost savings. With the Remidio camera, Aravind-Pondicherry is able to image at least 10,000 diabetic patients per year, many of whom live in impoverished villages. One of the key benefits of the Remidio camera is its low cost price of 0.03 USD, compared to conventional cameras (0.31USD).
Best Paper Award for Dr. S. Kavitha
Chennai, September 2, 2017
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Dr. S. Kavitha, Senior Glaucoma Consultant, Aravind-Pondicherry won Best Paper Award for the paper titled Shared medical appointments for glaucoma care provision at a tertiary care eye hospital – A randomized trial at Sangam, Glaucoma conference organized by Sankara Nethralaya, Chennai.
Best Video Award for Dr. R.Venkatesh
Jaipur, September 15-17
Dr. R. Venkatesh, Chief Medical Officer, Aravind-Pondicherry won the Best Video Award for the video titled Periscreener – Smartphone based virtual reality device for Perimetry at the annual conference of Glaucoma Society of India held at Jaipur.
IAPB Eye Health Hero Award for Mr. R. Meenakshi Sundaram
Kathmandu, Nepal, September 18
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Mr. R. Meenakshi Sundaram, Senior Manager, Outreach – Aravind Eye Care System was honoured with the Eye Health Hero Award by the International Agency for the Prevention of blindness. The award recognizes and celebrates frontline staff whose work in the field and engagement with the community makes a real difference in restoring sight.
SPECIAL EVENTS
Aravind’s Dream Project Opened in Chennai
Aravind – Chennai, September 30

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The much-awaited Aravind Eye Hospital, Chennai was inaugurated by Dr. V. Shanta, Chairperson, Adyar Cancer Institute, Chennai in the presence of Dr. J. Radhakrishnan IAS, Principal Secretary to Govt. Health and Family Welfare Dept; Dr. Alfred Sommer, Dean Emeritus and Professor-Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA; and Dr. G. Viswanathan, Founder and Chancellor of VIT University, Vellore. The 700-bedded hospital is spread around a spacious 5 lakh square feet. Separate wing is allotted for the underprivileged patients to avail services free or at subsidized rates. On the first day of operations, the hospital catered to 337 patients.
Aravind Honours Dr. Alfred Sommer
Aravind – Madurai, October 1, 2017

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This year’s Dr. G. Venkataswamy Endowment Award was presented to Dr. Alfred Sommer, Dean Emeritus and Professor, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in recognition of his outstanding contributions to the prevention of needless blindness in the developing world. The senior management team of Aravind, staff, well-wishers and friends of Aravind attended the ceremony. Subsequently, Dr. Sommer delivered the oration titled, An Ophthalmic-Public Health Journey.

The function witnessed the formal launch of Dr. V’s birth centenary year celebrations and the release of the specially designed logo to commemorate the occasion. 

NEWS AND EVENTS
Navaratri and Saraswati Pooja Celebrations
Aravind

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Various centres of Aravind celebrated Navaratri with special prayers and programmes. Special bhajans were sung during the occasion. Staff from various cadres participated.
Auroutsav 2017
Aravind, August 24- September 6

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Auroutsav, the biennial art-sports- and literary competitions for the staff of Aravind Eye Care Ssytem came to an end. The two –week event held on different dates across the centres and saw widespread participation from various cadres of staff. Staff members were divided into 5 groups named after various regions of the country – Northern, Eastern, Western, Central and Southern India. Altogether 30 competitions were conducted. Prizes were distributed to the winners. The winning team in each centre was awarded trophy.
Visit to Seva- Cambodia
Cambodia, August 21-24

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Mr. R. Meenakshi Sundaram visited Seva Cambodia Sight Program to understand its service delivery system and make necessary recommendations for further improvement.  
Fresher’s Day for Mid-Level Ophthalmic Personnel (MLOP) 
Aravind-Coimbatore, September 22
Dr. Revathy, Chief – Cornea Services was the chief guest for the function. Several entertainment programmes were staged.  A few MLOPs shared their experiences of training at Aravind. Dr. Revathy in her special address emphasized the importance of their roles and responsibilities.
Ophthalmic Equipment and Instruments Maintenance Course
September 4-15
Aravind’s Instruments Maintenance team consisting of Prof N.Manickam, Consultant, Mr.S.Poornachandran, Senior Technician, and Ms.N.Kasthuri, Biomedical Engineer, were invited as faculty for the ophthalmic instruments maintenance training programme held in Central Hospital, Mzuzu, Malawi from September 4-15. The course organised by Brien Holden Vision Institute was attended by 11 participants from various parts of Malawi. 

Following this, a similar training programme was organised by Light for the World International, Mozambique at Central Hospital, Beira, Mozambique from September 18-30. A total of 12 participants from various parts of Mozambique attended.
CONFERENCES ATTENDED ELSEWHERE
Annual Conference  of Glaucoma Society of India - Glaukopedia 2017
Jaipur, September 15-17
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Dr. R. Venkatesh
  • Non penetrating glaucoma surgery and CO2 laser assissted sclerotomy
  • Sequential versus combined cataract and glaucoma surgery: Pros and cons
  • Periscreener – Smartphone based virtual reality device for Perimetry (Best video award)



Dr. S. Kavitha
  • Indian scenario: are shared medical appointments necessary?

  • Safety and efficacy of 0.1% Nepafenac versus 1% Prednisolone acetate eye drops after laser iridotomy – A prospective randomized trial (e-poster)

Dr. Swati Upadhyaya
  • Assessing the sensitivity and specificity of non-mydriatic fundus camera for glaucoma screening (e-poster)

Dr. P.Sundaresan 
  • Current trends in POAG and PACG genetics
IAPB Council of Members Meeting
Kathmandu, Nepal, September 18

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Mr. R.D. Thulasiraj and Mr. R. Meenakshi Sundaram participated in the meeting and shared their inputs. The IAPB Council of Members is the annual, high-level policy summit dedicated to the elimination of the main causes of avoidable blindness and visual impairment. Held every year, the event brings together key decision makers from across the IAPB membership, as well as representatives from governments and the World Health Organization (WHO), to meet and discuss key issues in eye health 
TRAINING PROGRAMMES

Enrolments for September 2017 at Aravind Eye Care System

Course title
Training Centre
Enrolments for September 2017
Residency Programs
Diplomate of National Board
Theni
3
Post DO DNB
Theni
1
Pondicherry
1
Long Term Fellowship Programs - For Ophthalmologists
Fellowship in IOL & Anterior Segment
Coimbatore
1
Comprehensive Ophthalmology
Salem
1
Cornea
Madurai
3
General Ophthalmology
Coimbatore
3
Glaucoma
Pondicherry
1
Paediatric Ophthalmology & Strabismus
Madurai
1
Tirunelveli
1
Coimbatore
1
Retina - Vitreous
Pondicherry
1
Short Term Courses - For Ophthalmologists
Lasers in Diabetic Retinopathy
Coimbatore
2
Madurai
2
Observership in Glaucoma
Tirunelveli
1
Madurai
2
Coimbatore
1
Phacoemulsification
Madurai
1
Coimbatore
1
Small incision cataract surgery
Madurai
2
Coimbatore
2
Paramedical courses
Optical dispensing
Madurai
2
Eye bank technqiues
Madurai
1
Instrument Courses for technicians
Instrument Courses for Ophthalmologists
LAICO
1
Management Courses
Project management for eye care
LAICO
10
MONTHLY PATIENT STATISTICS

September - 2017

Hospitals
Madurai
Theni
Tirunelveli
Coimbatore
Pondicherry
Dindigul
Tirupur
Salem
Udumalpet
Tuticorin
RS Puram
Total
HOSPITAL OUT-PATIENT VISITS
Paying (New & Review) 52,449 8,218 26,930 32,414 23,914 6,443 3,612 10,141 3,111 4,541 2,658 1,74,431
Free:Direct walk-in (New & Review) 16,087 2,001 7,130 9,713 8,800 NA 1,014 1,830 1,381 739 NA 48,695
OUTREACH OUT PATIENT
Comprehensive Eye Camps 8,406 2,494 2,829 6,924 6,461 NA NA 1,141 NA 321 NA 28,576
Diabetic Retinopathy camps 888 208 247 633 322 NA NA NA NA NA NA 2,298
Refraction Camps 790 507 918 423 764 NA 326 NA 60 NA NA 3,788
Mobile Refraction Unit NA NA NA 771 NA NA NA NA NA NA NA 771
School Screening camps 925 303 649 NA 304 NA 72 439 NA NA NA 2,692
Paediatric Camps NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA
Vision Centres 19,059 5,043 10,518 3,761 5,427 NA 1,039 NA 1,583 NA NA 46,430
Community Centres / City Centres 8,183 1,799 2,598 NA 2,401 NA NA NA NA NA NA 14,981
Total OP Examinations 1,06,787 20,573 51,819 54,639 48,393 6,443 6,063 13,551 6,135 5,601 2,658 3,22,662
Total Number of Camps 31 11 20 29 29 NA NA 11 NA 3 NA 134
SURGERIES
Service Proportion of Cataract Surgeries
Paying 3,127 404 1,312 1,544 1,381 326 148 639 183 164 115 9,343
Free (Direct) 2,673 242 894 1,266 1,075 28 159 208 267 98 NA 6,910
Camp 2,676 282 820 1,280 1,756 NA 86 201 58 87 NA 7,246
Total Cataract Surgeries 8,476 928 3,026 4,090 4,212 354 393 1,048 508 349 115 23,499
Note: NA - Not Applicable
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