Blindness in Bangladesh
Bangladesh is one of the poorest countries in the world with over one-third of its people living below the poverty line. There are very few healthcare services available to all, especially the poor. There are even fewer eye care services, which results in a really high rate of blindness, especially in children. In 2004, the country launched the Bangladesh Childhood Cataract Campaign (BCCC), which set a goal of treating at least 20,000 blind children by 2020. The BCCC is being led by Dr. Mohammad Abdul Muhit, and it is recognized to be the largest campaign of its kind in the world. During the program’s first 5 years, they were able to restore sight to over 10,000 blind children!
However, this campaign isn’t enough to treat the nearly 750,000 blind people in the country. This is especially true for those living in rural areas, who may never get the chance to even have their eyes checked. There are other barriers to getting treated such as a lack of education surrounding treatable eye conditions and negative social stigmas surrounding blindness.