The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has urged residents to go for regular eye screening to prevent blindness.
Dr Humphrey Okoroukwu, Director Public Health Department of Health and Human Service Secretariat, FCTA, gave the advice at a medical outreach in Ruga City Gate Community, FCT, on Saturday to commemorate the World Sight Day.
The outreach, which included free eye examination, medication and offering of free medicated glasses, was organised by Public Health Department of Health and Human Service, FCTA, in collaboration with Nigerian Optometric Association, FCT Chapter.
Okoroukwu emphasised that the outreach was aimed at joining the rest of the world to celebrate World Sight Day to reawaken consciousness about the importance of eyes and the need to take care of the eye.
Okoroukwu noted that Ruga City Gate Community, FCT, had been in the spotlight for over a period.
He described the outreach as the third since August when the secretariat was alerted that large number of residents were blind due to strange disease.
Okoroukwu also urged the populace to desist from attending to eye problems only when it got worst but to make it a priority to access eye care at regular intervals.
“Most of the things that cause blindness are preventable but depends on when you present yourself in the hospital,’’ he observed.
Speaking on the year’s theme: “Universal Eye Health’’, Okoroukwu noted that eye care everywhere ought to be the responsibility of everybody to take charge of their health generally and eyes in particular.
Similarly, Dr Njong Onugu, Head Eye care Unit in the department, identified predominant eye health problem in Ruga community as viral conjunctivitis popularly called apollo or Pink Eye and allergic conjunctivitis amongst children and adults.
Onugu said that the observance of the day centered around creating awareness on the importance of everyone getting an eye examination, at least once a year.
She, however, advised that everyone should pledge to work together in order to achieve eye care everywhere.
According to her, eye examination once or twice annually is the first step in achieving universal eye care.
Chief Adamu Ahmadu, the Head of Ruga City Gate Community, FCT, commended Nigerian Optometric Association and others for the interventions and noted that the intervention had ameliorated the plight of the residents.
World Sight Day is observed globally every second Thursday in October and the theme for the 2018 edition is: “Universal Eye Health’’ while the call to action of its observance is: “Eyecare Everywhere’’.