By Jonathan Ugbal
The Cross River State Government has unveiled a child eye health project tagged “Seeing is Believing”.
The program is facilitated by Brien Holding vision institute with funding from Standard Chartered Bank with Health Commissioner, Dr. Inyang Asibong noting that eye care is a fundamental program of the ministry of health which has recorded tremendous success.
Represented by the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Dr. Joseph Bassey, Asibong said that; “As we plan strategically for a successful implementation of the project in Cross River, all hands must be on deck to identify all bottlenecks.
“Our target is to treat children from 0-14 years and by this it means the treatment begins from the mother’s womb. As we aim towards reducing child blindness, Cross River State will not relent her effort in Child eye care.”
The Director General of the State Primary Health Care Development Agency (SPHCDA), in her remarks said the dream of the agency will be actualized as it had adopted eye care as a core program during the Multi Year Operational Plan meeting held last year.
Dr. Edu who was represented by the Director, Primary Health in the agency, Dr. Onebieni Ana said part of the reasons for the inclusion of eye care in the Primary Health level is to checkmate child and adult eye health as children and parents have gone blind over the years due to minor eye issues that could have been treated at the Primary Health level.
She said the Agency was wholly behind the program with all Primary Health facilities will be ready to serve as entry points and hubs for the project.
Earlier, the project coordinator, Dr. Anne Ebri said the project will require the development of skills and adequate manpower to provide comprehensive child eye services at the various levels of health care in the Health and Education ministry as well as the SPHCDA.
Ebri said the state was chosen among other pilot states for the project which will run for 3 years with the Director of the Cross River State Eye Care Program, Dr. Philip Agbor saying the the program which he described as based on “a sustainable model” will see the education ministry play a pivotal role with the state hoping to take ownership after 3 years.
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