New York Eye Team Sets Sights on Educational and Surgical Mission to Northern India

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This month, the New York-based ISMS-Operation Restore Vision, a team of expert ophthalmologists and specialists, will travel to the banks of the Ganges River to teach advanced microsurgical techniques, conduct complex patient consults, and perform free-of-cost surgeries for underprivileged patients.

Blindness is a severe public health problem in Northern India, especially in the remote mountain villages located in the foothills of the Himalayas. This month, the New York-based ISMS-Operation Restore Vision, a team of expert ophthalmologists and specialists, will travel to the banks of the Ganges River to teach advanced microsurgical techniques, conduct complex patient consults, and perform free-of-cost surgeries for underprivileged patients. Their efforts will culminate in a regional teaching seminar for scores of local ophthalmologists and eye care providers.

The medical mission departs Feb. 23, 2017 from New York, and returns Mar. 5, 2017. The trip is a cooperative venture between ISMS-Operation Restore Vision, Southhampton, N.Y., and Dooley Intermed International, based in Forest Hills, New York.

The team is being organized by Scott Hamilton, COT, and Ronald Gentile, M.D., a retina specialist who leads Operation Restore Vision.

“We will provide advanced eye care and teach cutting edge surgical techniques involving anterior and posterior segment trauma, diagnosis and management of HIV related eye disease, retina detachment repair techniques, glaucoma tube implants, and management of eyelid lesions and oculofacial surgical techniques,” Gentile said.

The team will be working with the Hans Foundation Eye Care facility in Haridwar, India, dedicated to providing affordable eye care to everyone in need, regardless of the ability to pay. The U.S. team will be featured presenters at the Northern India Ophthalmic Conference in Haridwar on Feb. 26, 2017. The conference will be followed by surgical instruction for Indian eye doctors and free surgical care for particularly complex eye conditions.

Haridwar is an ancient city, and an important Hindu pilgrimage site in North India's Uttarakhand state, where the Ganges River emerges from the Himalayas. The Hans Foundation Eye Care facility includes an eye hospital in Haridwar, with outlying vision centers, and remote outreach camps.

“Functioning in this manner, The Hans Foundation Eye Care provides affordable eye care to a large underserved population of the visually impaired in Northern India,” Hamilton said.

ISMS-Operation Restore Vision’s 10 member team includes co-leaders Scott Hamilton, COT, and Ronald Gentile, M.D., along with John M. Aljian, M.D., Sanjay Kedhar, M.D., Christopher Teng, M.D., Omar Ozgur, M.D., Robert P. Finley of Alcon Laboratories, Inc., Nelson V. Co, CRNA, photographer Ivanhoe A. Gadpaille, and filmmaker Daniel A. Byers of Skyship Films.

The team’s 2013 sight-restoring expedition to remote villages of Nepal can be seen in a nine-minute “Gift of Sight” documentary posted to https://vimeo.com/75919799

A documentary of Operation Restore Vision’s medical mission to the Dominican Republic in 2014 can be seen here: https://vimeo.com/93453277

Tax deductible contributions in support of this humanitarian mission can be made at: http://www.OperationRestoreVision.org and http://www.DooleyIntermed.org

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