Ratanakiri is a province in northeast Cambodia. The province has about 184,000 inhabitants, most of whom work on the land. It is a poor province with limited infrastructure and large distances between villages.
The provincial hospital in Ratanakiri has a modest eye care department, where an ophthalmologist has worked since 2013. In addition to eye examinations and treatments, cataract surgery is also carried out in the hospital. It is supported by the Eye Care Foundation who provide free eye care to the residents of the service area who cannot afford them.
In order to provide the residents in remote areas with good eye care, eye screenings are regularly held on site. During these eye screenings, the eyes of groups of people are checked. If necessary, patients are referred to the provincial hospital.
Building a new eye clinic
The current provincial hospital offers too little space for a fully functioning eye department. Here, the eye department does not have its own operating room, no space to store medical equipment, and there is no room for patients who need to stay overnight after surgery. There is only a small consultation room, where out of necessity all eye tests are currently taking place and supplies are stored. Surgeries are now forced to take place in a shared operating room. The new eye clinic is a major step forward in the field of eye care in Ratanakiri.
Eye Care Foundation is building a new eye clinic on the grounds of the hospital, consisting of a single storey. As a result, a single level ensures good access to all areas for visually impaired and blind patients. For patients in wheelchairs there is a special entrance.