The Wife of the President, Dr. Aisha Muhammadu Buhari has commended Noor Dubai Foundation for implementing the visual care agreement it signed with Aisha Buhari Foundation in 2017.
Aisha said the agreement is aimed at accelerating access to visual healthcare in Nigeria. She stated this during the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Foundation and Katsina State Government at the State House, Abuja.
Mrs. Buhari charged all Nigerians to take advantage of the services in order to improve their health.
“Am happy that Noor Dubai Foundation has engaged the state to run Katsina Comprehensive Eye Care Program as part of its philanthropic activities to Nigeria, and called on Nigerians to take advantage of these Laudable activity to improve their eye health.”
The Chief Executive of Noor Dubai Foundation, Dr. Manal Muhammad Omran Taryam Al Shamsi, said the choice of Katsina resulted from a survey, which revealed that there were at least 122,000 visually impaired people in the state, out of which 24,000 were blind, while only 25% of cases benefit from surgery services.
“The partnership will yield positive results because 82% of visual loss can be treated or prevented .This is why we engaged Katsina state to implement a 4 – year sustainable comprehensive eye care program. The state government has also expressed willingness to support and sustain the program.”
According to her, the program will include revamping of infrastructure in 3 main hospitals, setting up of 12 vision centers and 3 optical workshops as well as supporting and equipping 250 primary care centers.
S“Also on the cards are 11,000 free cataract surgeries, 36,000 screenings and treatment for other eye disorders as well as rehabilitation support for 1000 individuals with permanent visual loss.”
Speaking at the occasion, the Deputy Governor of Katsina State, Alhaji Mannir Yakubu said the MoU marks a great milestone in the delivery of eye care services in the state.
“It is aimed at improving the quality of life and the socio-economic status of the people of the state through reduction of burden of blindness and visual impairment. Katsina state will continue to support the attainment of Universal Health care by the year 2020.
The Minister of Health, represented by National Coordinator for Eye Health, Dr. Oteri Okolo said the Ministry is in support of such partnerships and they should be sustained, believing that the outcome of this pilot would yield positive results across the country.