Health Minister dismayed at huge numbers having eye problems

By Don Asoka Wijewardena

Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena yesterday expressed dismay that around 1,500,000 people including 160,000 schoolchildren in the country were suffering from eye disorders. The Vision 2020 Programme, headed by the Director General of Health Services, would strive to protect the masses and prevent rapidly increasing eye complications, he said.

The Vision 2020 would mainly focus on preventable eye disorders and the Health Ministry had formulated a five-year plan to achieve the targeted goals, Minister Sirisena said at a free spectacle distribution ceremony, for schoolchildren at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute recently.

Minister Sirisena said that the Vision 2020 Programme, which had been funded by some donors had been actively engaged in diagnosing, treating eye patients and providing them with spectacles free of charge. The Standard Chartered Bank, International Sight Foundation and some other organizations provided about Rs. 30 million for the programme, the Minister said.

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