CureBlindness | Contributions at Work in Ethiopia

Contributions at Work in Ethiopia

Ethiopia, with a population of 105 million people has one of the highest rates of blindness in the world, with a national prevalence rate of 1.6 percent. The estimated overall burden of blindness in Ethiopia includes 1.6 million blind people and 3.6 million people with low vision, with cataract as the most common cause of both. There are approximately 130 ophthalmologists in Ethiopia, with the majority in the capital city of Addis Ababa.

HCP’s first partnership in Ethiopia developed in 2008 with Dr. Tilahun Kiros, head ophthalmologist of the Quiha Zonal Hospital in Mekelle during cataract campaigns with the Millennium Villages Project and Quiha Zonal Hospital that provided 630 surgeries.

In 2014, HCP signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of Health to reduce the backlog of treatable blindness in Ethiopia by doubling the number of cataract surgeries performed in the country.

Today, HCP works with ophthalmic staff at 19 zonal hospitals, teaching hospitals and clinics in five regions of Ethiopia. Leveraging the strengths of all of our partners has allowed us to develop a robust eye care delivery system that is making great strides in reducing avoidable blindness in Ethiopia.

How so many lives can be changed

Dr. Matt Oliva and a team of dedicated doctors, nurses, and ophthalmic assistants from Harar, Ethiopia, provide life-changing surgeries. With the tremendous support of the hard-working team in Harar, Dr. Oliva alongside local surgeons performed 1336 cataract surgeries over the course of a week.

Our Partners in Ethiopia

Addis Ababa Region

  • Eye Bank of Ethiopia
  • Menelik II Hospital
  • MyungSung Christian Medical Center
  • Sinskey Eye Clinic
  • St. Paul's Hospital Millennium Medical College
  • WGGA Vision Specialized Eye Clinic

Amhara Region

  • Amhara Regional Health Bureau
  • Boru Meda Hospital
  • Debre Berhan Referral Hospital
  • Felege Hiwot Referral Hospital (Bahir Dar)
  • University of Gondar Hospital
  • Woldiya General Hospital

Oromia Region

  • Abbas Philippos (Dembidollo Hospital)
  • Adama Hospital
  • Bisidimo General Hospital
  • Goba Zonal Hospital/Madda Walabu University (Bale Robe)
  • Jimma University Specialized Hospital
  • Nekemte Hospital

Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples' Region

  • Arba Minch General Hospital
  • Eyu Ophthalmic Medium Clinic
  • Hawassa Referral Hospital
  • Hosanna Hospital (WEEMA)
  • Wolaita Sodo University Teaching Referral Hospital

Tigray Region

  • Aksum University Referral Hospital
  • Quiha General Hospital and Tertiary Eye Care Center


  • Federal Ministry of Health Ethiopia