The Clinics

Pacific Eye Institute

Suva, Fiji

The Pacific Eye Institute offers eye care training for doctors and nurses from the Pacific region and a full range of eye care services. The only training facility of its kind in the Pacific, The Institute is leading the charge against avoidable blindness by countering the massive shortage of eye specialists in the region.

History

Low government spending, a lack of doctors and nurses, and rundown clinics and equipment are all huge challenges for eye care in the Pacific. For people living in remote areas, accessing the health care they need can be close to impossible. We established the Pacific Eye Institute in 2006 to help address these issues, with a focus on training local doctors and nurses.

For the first four years the Institute was located at Tamavua Hospital in Suva. In 2010, we built a new custom-made eye care and teaching facility on the grounds of the Colonial War Memorial Hospital. The Institute and the hospital joined forces, and the Pacific Eye Institute is now an impressive eye care hub for the entire region.

In 2011, the Diabetes Eye Clinic opened on-site to provide diabetes eye care services and deliver a teaching programme for nurses in diabetes eye care. This followed our research in 2009 which revealed that more than 40 per cent of adults aged 40 years and over in Fiji have diabetes, meaning demand for diabetes eye care services is huge.

What training is offered at the Pacific Eye Institute?

Before the Pacific Eye Institute was established, Pacific doctors had to go to Papua New Guinea for training. Now they can train in their own region.

The Institute offers a series of courses focused on the particular eye care needs of the Pacific and provides professional development and support to graduates and eye care workers. It also advocates for investment in eye care and undertakes research. Courses are administered by Fiji National University’s College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences.

The Pacific Eye Institute is a significant provider of eye care services in Fiji and in outreach locations across the Pacific, performing around 2,000 eye surgeries a year. This means there are good opportunities for eye nurses and doctors in-training to get practical experience.

Information for patients and family of patients

Pacific Eye Institute/Colonial War Memorial Eye Clinic

Brown St, Suva
(+679) 3100 424
pacificeyeinstitute.org

Opening hours

(Please note Fiji is one hour behind New Zealand)

Monday – Thursday 8:00am – 4:30pm
Friday 8:00am – 4:00pm
Saturday – Sunday CLOSED

Key Achievements

In 2017, in partnership with the CWM Hospital’s eye department, the Pacific Eye Institute:

  • Gave 25,508 consultations
  • Performed 1,426 sight-saving surgeries
  • Carried out 1,151 diabetic laser treatments
  • Dispensed 4,102 spectacles

The Institute is also the base for our Pacific outreach team and the Mobile Eye Clinic, which in 2017 delivered a further:

  • 13,099 consultations
  • 1,331 surgeries
  • 7,250 pairs of spectacles

The Pacific Eye Institute has trained 161 eye doctors, nurses, and technicians. In 2018 there are 25 students enrolled.

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