Rajasthan Becomes First State to Implement Blindness Control Policy

Rajasthan has become the first state in India to implement a policy for blindness control with the objective of ensuring the “right to sight” for its citizens. The Medical & Health Department of the state government released the policy document over the weekend, outlining a massive drive to reduce the rate of blindness and bring light into the lives of over 3 lakh people suffering from visual impairment.

Prevalence of Blindness

The prevalence rate of blindness in Rajasthan was 1.1% in 2020, and the new policy aims to bring it down to 0.3%. This ambitious goal will be achieved through a combination of keratoplasty centers for cornea transplant, eye banks in medical colleges, and public awareness campaigns.

Cornea Transplants and Eye Banks

The state government will mandatorily run keratoplasty centers for cornea transplant and eye banks in all medical colleges. Additionally, cornea collected by private bodies and non-government organizations receiving financial assistance will be made available to government institutions on priority.

Collaboration with Voluntary Organizations

Comprehensive efforts for the elimination of visual impairment will be made in all districts in collaboration with voluntary organizations, trusts, hospitals, and charitable institutions. This will include special training for eye experts and surgeons, post-graduate students, and counsellors working for eye donation.

Public Awareness and Technical Improvements

The policy also entails a drive for public awareness as well as technical improvement activities related to the cure of blindness. This will include campaigns for eye donation on an extensive level and training for eye assistants, in addition to training for eye surgeons and other specialists.

Rajasthan has taken a bold step in implementing a policy for blindness control, with the goal of ensuring the “right to sight” for all its citizens. The state government’s efforts, in collaboration with voluntary organizations, trusts, hospitals and charitable institutions, will go a long way in reducing the prevalence of blindness and bringing light into the lives of those suffering from visual impairment.



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