Nepal’s eye hospital: Sight for those suffering from cataract « Khabarhub
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Nepal’s eye hospital: Sight for those suffering from cataract

25 July 2019  

Time taken to read : 5 Minute

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KATHMANDU: Just 25 years ago, Nepalese people who suffered from cataract would have no chance to regain the eye-sight. Costly contact lenses imported from foreign countries were out of reach for most of the Nepalese patients as they could not afford to buy them.

Things, however, took a turn for positive in the year 1995 when Tilganga Eye Hospital in Kathmandu began to manufacture contact lenses on its own. The production of contact lenses within Nepal has not only helped the Nepalese patients but also the foreigners outside. Now the cataract patients do not spend the rest of their life in darkness because they have easy access to contact lenses at affordable price.

Contact lenses being exported to 70 countries

Contact lenses produced by Tilganga Eye Hospital are being exported to different countries in the world. It has a world market open for sale. As high as 500,000 contact lenses are manufactured in a year by the eye hospital and not less than 70 countries across the world place their demands to buy them.

The lenses produced by Tilganga Eye Hospital now reach India, China, Pakistan, Thailand, and Indonesia among 70 other countries. As many as 53,00,000 people suffering from cataract around the world have got their vision back as their eye-sight was restored by using contact-lenses manufactured by Tilganga.

Of late, Tilganga Eye Hospital has made two types of eye-lens: PMMA (hard) and Foldable (soft). PMMA lens is made by using the old technique while ‘foldable lens’ is made through a new technique. The price of the PMMA lens in Nepali currency is somewhere from Rs 200 to 250 and ‘foldable lens’ costs in the range of Rs 1300 to 1400.

Bhagirath Baninya, public relation officer at the Tilganga Eye Hospital, says that ‘foldable lenses’ have a sizeable market in the world and many countries place their orders for these lenses. A total of 47,02,453 PMMA lenses were made from 1996 to 2018, out of which 45,54,917 lenses have already been sent to market for sale.

Similarly, a total of 933,336 foldable lenses have been manufactured and not less than 755,165 have already been sold. Tilganga Eye Hospital has started exporting the eye lenses to the world market since 2000 AD.

High demands of eye-lenses

After the world market responded positively to eye-lenses manufactured by Tilganga Eye Hospital, demands of these lenses increased over the years. The hospital could sell only 103,021 lenses in two years from 1996 to 1998. The numbers of manufactured lenses sold in the market increased up to 695,586 in the time period of 4 years from 1999 to 2003.

Further, a total of 10,92,897 lenses were sold from 2004 to 2009 and the numbers increased to 17,44,276 from 2009 to 2013 AD. Similarly, in the period of 4 years from 2014 to 2018, whopping numbers of 16,73,087 eye patients have regained their vision with the help of eye-lenses manufactured by this hospital.

In a period of 24 years, at least 53 hundred thousand eye-patients both Nepalese and foreigners have been benefited by artificial lenses manufactured in Tilganga, says Bhagirath Baninya, Director – public relation office of Tilganga Eye Hospital.

Nepalese eye-patients now get eye treatment at the cheapest possible cost all due to the manufacturing of lenses at Tilganga Eye Hospital, adds Baninya informing further that Tilganga has been operating four lathe machines to make these lenses with 95 workforce employed daily to keep it running for regular production.

The government of Nepal has already provided a grant of Rs 100 million to buy two more lathe machines for manufacturing more numbers of eye-lenses, informs, Bhagirath Baninya.

Publish Date : 25 July 2019 10:42 AM

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