Strengthening local health systems

Delivering eye care can't be done in isolation. We work with many organisations within the health care sector to strengthen local eye care systems.

Strengthening local health systems

A holistic approach

Rather than delivering private eye care, we work with local hospitals and medical centres to strengthen public health systems. This does take longer, but at the end of the day it means we’re creating sustainable eye care services delivered by local people.

“The health that we enjoy is directly related to the wealth of our country. That efficient system has to be transferred to the Third World."

​Working ourselves out of a job

We’re confident we can train enough people to deliver eye care services right across the Pacific. Having said that, we won’t leave a country until we’re sure it can stand on its own two feet and meet the eye care needs of its people.

This means, further to training local eye care specialists, we:

  • Focus on ensuring there are strong patient referral systems in place so that non-eye care health workers are able to recognise and refer basic eye conditions.
  • Work hard to make sure that policy-makers know about eye care to ensure eye services are included in national policies and plans.
  • Advocate for better patient record systems, so that eye care workers can track a patient's records, and also have access to national eye care data.
“Good eye care is the right of everybody, not just the wealthy who can afford it.”
- Professor Fred Hollows

What we achieved in 2023

  • 246 eye care professionals participated in workshops and trainings for continuing professional development
  • 44 eye health staff in Fiji, Solomon Islands, Kiribati, Samoa, Papua New Guinea, Tonga and Vanuatu received workforce support visits
  • Kiribati, Solomon Islands, PNG and Fiji participated in World Sight Day conducting community awareness campaigns, comprehensive eye screening events, and distributing health education resources
  • 55 primary level clinicians (non-eye care clinicians) were trained in primary eye care
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