Screening Day in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
July 24, 2014
Orbis’s seventh Flying Eye Hospital (FEH) visit to Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia brought mothers and children together for pediatric cataract, strabismus and oculoplastic screenings. Mothers stood by their children as they were screened for treatment during the first week of the program, held at the National Center for Maternal and Child Health, the main provider for children’s eye health in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.
Children of all ages patiently waited as they anticipated their turn for screening, examining colorful murals around the room with dancing monkeys and owls. Children sat as Dr. Dan Neely, Volunteer Faculty member from Indiana University School of Medicine, and Associate Ophthalmologist Dr. Andrew Simpson from Princess Royal University Hospital London conducted cataract exams and strabismus screenings.
Working together, Volunteer Faculty, hands-on trainees and FEH staff prepared patients chosen for treatment. Patients are carefully chosen as the best case studies to help train local eye health professionals how to enhance their skills. Orbis nurse Angela Purcell tended to 10-year-old Dulguun by sharing a coloring book with him before prepping him for oculoplastic surgery. His was just one of several surgeries that were performed on board the FEH throughout the week, including a lensectomy and IOL implant on a 2-year-old by Dr. Neely and a ptosis repair procedure led by Dr. Yasser Khan, a first-time volunteer with Orbis. Mongolian medical professionals observed the surgery on a screen from the classroom inside the FEH, asking questions along the way.
For many of the patients selected, their mother was the first person to see them regain their sight. The team looks ahead to a busy second programmatic week of training to come!
Photos by Geoff Oliver Bugbee/Orbis