Doctor training nurses.

Virtual Flying Eye Hospital program takes off in Cameroon

Dr. Danielle Beleho – an ophthalmologist at Orbis partner hospital Magrabi ICO Cameroon Eye Institute – shares how Orbis’s commitment to innovation and working in partnership is helping to fight blindness in Cameroon, despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Last June, in response to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, we launched our virtual Flying Eye Hospital program building on our world-leading expertise in delivering telemedicine via the Cybersight platform.

Dr. Danielle Beleho – a practicing ophthalmologist at the Magrabi ICO Cameroon Eye Institute near Youandé – recently took part in our virtual training program for ophthalmologists in Cameroon.

Participants in the Cameroon Virtual Flying Eye Hospital program

Dr. Danielle Beleho and other ophthalmologists in Cameroon take part in the virtual Flying Eye Hospital training program

Despite not being able to meet on-board our Flying Eye Hospital, like she had previously in 2013 and 2017, Dr. Beleho told us (virtually, of course!) that she found many similarities and positives to the virtual training. Namely, the dedication and expertise of Orbis Volunteer Faculty, the interactive nature of the courses and the new possibility of playing back course modules.

The peer-to-peer model is part of what makes our Flying Eye Hospital program so impactful – and preserving this element has been key to the success of the virtual programs.

Dr. Danielle Beleho

Ophthalmologist at the Magrabi ICO Cameroon Eye Institute

This sys­tem­at­ic train­ing from doc­tor-to-doc­tor allows the teach­ing doc­tor who mas­ters the top­ic, to share their expe­ri­ence, espe­cial­ly his know-how with his fel­low learn­er. We learned that dis­tance is not a bar­ri­er to train­ing as prac­ti­cal as it is, and this is very encour­ag­ing… we can do a lot with very little!” 

These images show Dr. Beleho treating patients (these images were taken before the COVID-10 pandemic) and taking part in virtual Orbis training.

Since taking part in her first training program on the Flying Eye Hospital in 2013, Dr. Beleho has continued to grow her practice and fight avoidable blindness in her community.

We would like to thank Dr. Beleho for her commitment to developing her skills and saving sight!

Orbis in Cameroon

It is estimated that nearly a quarter of a million people in Cameroon suffer from blindness and a further 600,000 from vision loss. With a lack of skilled eye care professionals, infrastructure and equipment to adequately address these needs, Cameroon continues to have one of the highest rates of blindness in the world.

But, there is still hope in sight, thanks to your support! Since 2014, Orbis has been working in partnership with local hospitals, including the Magrabi ICO Cameroon Eye Institute (MICEI) where Dr. Danielle Beleho works, to train local eye health professionals and deliver sight saving treatment where it's needed most.

Help save sight today!

Will you help keep our virtual training progams running, so we can support more dedicated eye doctors like Dr. Beleho?

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