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An overview of Orbis in the field and at home in Canada.

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Published by Orbis Canada, 2018-08-21 16:24:26

About Orbis Canada

An overview of Orbis in the field and at home in Canada.

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To transform lives through the prevention and treatment of blindness.


With our network of partners, we mentor, train and inspire local teams so they can save sight in their


Orbis is an international non-profit organization that brings people together to fight avoidable blindness,
restore vision and help ensure no one loses their sight to a preventable, treatable disease.


 We bring people together in the fight against avoidable blindness

 We help countries build the skills, knowledge and resources they need to prevent blindness and
provide the highest quality eye care possible for all their people

 We train doctors, nurses and medical technicians so they can save and restore sight in their own
communities for generations to come

 We strengthen and improve eye health systems by partnering with local hospitals, public health
agencies and fellow NGOs to find sustainable solutions now, and for the future

 We advocate to make fighting blindness a priority by working at local, national and international
levels to demonstrate the economic and social benefits of a strong, effective eye health system

 We’re creating a permanent, united eye care community through our telemedicine platform
Cybersight, our Flying Eye Hospital, our Volunteer Faculty, and our partners around the world – we are
eliminating geographical barriers and bringing together the best ophthalmic professionals to fight
blindness and provide quality eye care for all


Our Global Impact in 2017

In 2017 alone, the following was achieved at our partner institutions and
on the Flying Eye Hospital:

 62,381 trainings were completed by doctors, nurses and other
eye care workers – 55% increase from 2016
• 4,453 were completed by doctors – 143% increase from 2016
• 57,928 were completed by nurses and other eye health
workers – 51% increase from 2016

 5,044,198 eye screenings/examinations were conducted – 43%
increase from 2016
• 4,000,023 were on children – 47% increase from 2016
• 1,044,175 were on adults – 28% increase from 2016

 96,398 eye surgeries/laser treatments were performed – 17%
increase from 2016
• 24,195 were on children – 26% increase from 2016
• 72,203 were on adults – 14% percent increase from 2016

 8,776,120 medical/optical treatments1 were completed – 20%
increase from 2016
• 2,729,798 were on children

Our Global Impact Over the Past Five Years

From 2013 to 2017, the following was achieved at our partner
institutions and on the Flying Eye Hospital:

 174,952 trainings were completed by doctors, nurses and other
eye care workers
• 11,927 were completed by doctors
• 163,025 were completed by nurses and other professionals

 15,785,552 eye screenings and examinations were conducted
• 11,012,379 were on children
• 4,773,1730 were on adults

 386,752 eye surgeries/laser treatments were performed
• 111,667 were on children
• 275,085 were on adults

 28,637,183 medical/optical treatments were completed
• 14,289,361 were on children
• 14,347,822 were on adults

1 Medical/optical treatments include treatments with medicines or prescriptions at any facility, or in
the community, or eyeglasses prescribed for refractive error through an Orbis-sponsored program,
or Zithromax distributions.



Global Statistics (2015)

 253 million people in the world are blind or visually impaired
 36 million people are blind
 75% of people who are blind or visually impaired suffer from conditions that are treatable, curable

or preventable
 89% of these people live in low or middle-income countries and therefore struggle to access care
 43% of visual impairment is due to refractive error, such as myopia or astigmatism
 Lost productivity among adults who need eyeglasses has been estimated to cost the global

economy US$202 billion every year
 Risk of blindness at any given age is greatest in Asia and Sub Saharan Africa
 Women are disproportionally affected – 55% of all people who are blind are women
 The return on investment for every US$1 spent on eye health in low and middle-income countries

equates to $4 of economic gain

Childhood Blindness

 There are 1.4 million blind children worldwide
 75% of the world’s blind children live in low and middle-income countries
 Uncorrected refractive errors such as myopia account for over 80% of visual impairment among

school-aged children, and in many affected areas, only 15-20% of children needing sight-saving
eyeglasses actually receive them
 In over 50% of cases, sight could be restored with early intervention and comprehensive treatment


One of the most critical deficits in global eye health is the lack
of an adequately trained workforce. This is the very reason
Orbis was formed.

Our world-renowned Volunteer Faculty are the heartbeat of our
training programs around the world. For more than 30 years, the
foundation of our work has been to teach, train and mentor eye
health professionals to prevent and treat avoidable blindness in their
own communities.

Comprised of world-leading experts in eye health, our global
network of more than 400 volunteer ophthalmologists, nurses,
anesthesiologists and biomedical engineers from over 30 countries,
share their skills and expertise with local medical teams to help
improve the quality of eye care for generations to come.

Our Volunteer Faculty deliver training in partnership with local
hospitals, public health agencies and governments. Training takes
place on board our incredible Flying Eye Hospital, through our online
mentoring platform, Cybersight, and through our long-term country

We are proud to say that about 20% of
these incredible volunteers are Canadian.


In 2018, Orbis Canada launched a brand new multi-faceted program designed to engage and empower our
Canadian Volunteer Faculty. Currently in the pilot phase, the Program will serve to highlight and celebrate the
volunteer support of our Canadian Volunteer Faculty, as well as to empower them to become true Orbis
ambassadors. The Program includes two key elements:

1. Online Community: a digital gathering place where we showcase the work and contributions of our

Volunteer Faculty and provide them with an opportunity to engage their networks in supporting Orbis
through a variety of fundraising campaigns and initiatives.


2. In-Office Vignette: a display set up in the Volunteer Faculty member’s office, featuring a series of

personalized and customized communications elements, including:

24” x 36” framed photograph of the Large-scale model of the
Volunteer Faculty member Orbis Flying Eye Hospital

Customized Orbis brochure featuring the Customized donation slip featuring the
Volunteer Faculty member on the front panel Volunteer Faculty member



Cybersight is our award-winning telemedicine platform.
Through Cybersight, our Volunteer Faculty teach and
support eye care teams around the world using the latest
advancements in internet and mobile technologies.

As a digital extension of our mission, Cybersight expands our
global reach by enabling our expert volunteers to teach and
support eye care teams in remote, otherwise inaccessible areas
around the world. With Cybersight, we can have an impact in
regions where a physical presence is simply not possible due to
cost, logistics or security.

Through Cybersight, our Volunteer Faculty provide on-demand
advice and consultation for complex cases, mentoring local eye
care professionals on diagnosis and treatment of their patients.

We also make sure that everyone benefits from our training
activities on-board the Flying Eye Hospital, wherever it is in the
world. We broadcast live lectures and surgeries to partner
hospitals and classrooms around the globe. Remote participants
enjoy a similar experience as those in the on-board classroom –
they see surgeries through the operating microscope and can
ask questions of expert surgeons and lecturers in real time.


We have over 40 long-term programs around the
world, across countries including India, Bangladesh,
Nepal, China, Vietnam, Ethiopia, South Africa, Ghana,
Zambia, Cameroon, Peru, Mongolia and Indonesia.

Our long-term country programs involve a wide range of
activities that all work together to provide a comprehensive
approach to eye care. We work with local hospitals and our
teams of expert volunteers to train health care
professionals and create eye care units to treat a wide
range of conditions.

We work at the grassroots level to raise awareness of good
healthcare and hygiene and to improve referral networks so
that those in need can receive the treatment they deserve.

We conduct school screenings and provide students with
glasses to help them get the most out of their education.
We establish school eye care clubs, with members taking
on the responsibility of educating their peers and
community on ways to keep their eyes healthy.

By working with partners across the health service to
establish and strengthen existing care, we help build long-
term, sustainable eye care solutions for communities
around the world. From rural areas to bustling cities, we
aim to provide the tools and knowledge to help restore
vision for generations to come.

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