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Over 50 Children Among Recipients of Sight-Restoring Surgery in Ethiopia

news | Ethiopia | Oct 29, 2021

HCP Board Member Dr. Matt Oliva and our partners in Ethiopia recently organized a two-week long surgical outreach at Bisidimo Hospital in Harar, Ethiopia. Over the course of the campaign, the team completed 1,050 sight-restoring surgeries.

One of the patients was Belo Beya, who lives with her mother in Harar, Ethiopia. Belo has been blind for three years from cataracts in both eyes. She was mesmerized when Dr. Oliva showed her a picture of herself on his phone following her surgery.

“HCP has been working at building capacity at Bisidimo Hospital for a decade now and there still remains a large backlog of patients who are cataract blind,” Dr. Oliva said. “We will be back with a local team in a few months. It is always especially meaningful to restore sight to brave and trusting children like Belo who have their surgeries with a local anesthesia. There were over 50 kids who received surgery. About 20 we’re blind in both eyes like Belo.”

An additional surgical outreach took place in Abra Minch, Ethiopia, led by HCP Co-founder Dr. Geoff Tabin.

Urke Tenkele, from the mountainous village of Mierab Abaya, attended the outreach with her granddaughter. Urke had been blind for several years. After her surgery, Urke’s granddaughter took her to view Abaya Lake from their village. Urke said it had been a long time since she had enjoyed this view.

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