There is a dire lack of resources for eye care in the Four Sections of Thomazeau. Over the years, thousands of pair of sunglasses have been shipped and distributed. Reading glasses are also fitted in the clinics.
A few years ago, Opthamolgist Dr. Pascale from Port au Prince began volunteering time to screen patients and perform cataract surgery. FOH shipped a microscope and Dr. Pascale does surgeries one day a month in Croix des Bouquet at the Scalibrini Order's complex.
Dr. Pascale accepts no money. We do find supplies for her when possible. She has done several corrective surgeries for children at her own clinic. FoH funds the surgeries and follow up care at a reduced price. Fr. Larry also had a special gift that was used for an ll year old who needed to go to the DR for surgery and follow up.
Welcome Dr. Matt Thompson….In spring 2014, Dr. Thompson from the Tower Clock Clinic in Green Bay accompanied the surgical team. He performed 25 cataract removals and various other surgeries. He is committed to returning late in fall.
Dr. Matt reported that patients came who had such advanced glaucoma and resultant blindness that cataract removal would be of no use. There is a small new portable glaucoma pressure tester that can easily be used by our medical teams at the clinics and drops given for those in need. To control the incidence of glaucoma would be a huge benefit.
Plans are moving ahead to obtain the tester and put it to use as soon as possible. Some years ago a nurse asked a group of women what they most would like. One said: Send us an eye doctor. A blessing indeed.
Our hope is to grow the eye care availability. Additional eye care specialists would be a great addition to our medical missions. Their services could be used effectively on the mission for diagnoses and also for surgeries. And there is always the opportunity to contribute supplies or equipment if doctors are not able to go on the missions.
Dr. Matt's report from Dec. 2014
I was able to perform 23 surgeries (20 cataracts, 3 others) in 2 days. This compares favorably to the last trip which was about 30 cases in 5 days. I saw 3 children who need cataract surgery but will require anesthesia so they are going to be scheduled for the next trip in April.