Boston’s Vision-Aid and Chennai-Based Sankara Nethralaya Open Resource Center for the Visually Impaired in Chennai

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CHENNAI, India– Boston-based non-profit organization Vision-Aid and Chennai’s Sankara Nethralaya, one of the leading eye care providers in India, inaugurated a Resource Center for the Visually Impaired at Sankara Nethralaya’s Shenoy Nagar Campus in Chennai.

The Center will offer highly subsidized, state-of-the-art services, technology and devices to visually impaired patients, both organizations said in a joint statement.

“Patients referred to the Resource Center typically have vision impairment caused by eye diseases such as macular degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa and optic neuropathy among  others,” the statement said. “These  diseases  can cause  degeneration  in  the  patients’ central or peripheral vision, causing vision loss and sometimes leading to partial or complete blindness. Sankara Nethralaya’s low vision care clinic, headed by Ms. Sarika Gopalakrishnan sees around 400 such patients every month along with her enthusiastic team. The resource Center will now augment the services offered with several  valuable  new resources to help the visually impaired.”

The resource Center was inaugurated on Dec. 28 Ramakrishna Raju and Revathy Ramakrishna, founders of Vision-Aid. Also present on the occasion were senior management team members from both Vision-Aid and Sankara Nethralaya and invited guests.

Mr. Raju outlined the motivations for the resource Center, given the high prevalence of vision impairment and the low availability of affordable services, and explained that the Vision-Aid model for such Resource Centers includes 3 major components – “Enablement” of a patient with the help of screening and devices, “Education” with a range of training programs and “Empowerment” to help them live with independence and dignity. Mr. Raju and Mrs. Ramakrishna expressed their delight at the launch of the new resource Center and welcomed the opportunity to work with the Sankara Nethralaya team to further the cause of the visually impaired.

Visually impaired persons in and around the state are invited by Sankara Nethralaya and Vision-Aid, to visit and take advantage of the new resource Center.

For more information, visit Sankara Nethralaya’s low vision care clinic for an initial screening and referral. The low vision care clinic is functioning in an outstanding way for the past 10 years at Mahyco block of Main branch in Nungambakkam and appointments can be made by calling or through email. The founder of the institution Chairman Emeritus Dr. SS Badrinath and Dr.

Vasanthi Badrinath, the board members Dr. Kris Vasan, Dr. Girish Shiv Rao, Ms. Akila Ganesan and Optometry giants Dr. Viswanathan, Dr. Krishna Kumar and Ms. Vijayalakshmi were very instrumental in inauguration of this services at Sankara Nethralaya.

Syed Ali Rizvi, President of VisionAid, said that, “with the opening of the Resource Center at the Shenoy Nagar campus in Chennai, the visually impaired will be well served with the latest in technology, with costs that are within reach of everyone. The Teams at Sankara Nethralaya and Vision-Aid are very excited with this new development. We offer our thanks to all those who have made this possible, especially Dr. Aparna Raghuram, one of the Directors on the Vision-Aid board, who helped catalyze this very significant project.”

 

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