Eye Care and Sustainable Development Goals in India How Sight Helps Achieve the SDGs: Evaluating Data and Policy for the Way Forward
Published in 2022 | Publisher: Dr Arjun Kumar, IMPRI Impact and Policy Research Institute, New Delhi | Printed in India
Cover Page Image: Eye camp in West Bengal, India, Daxal Desai (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
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Author(s): Kuldeep Singh; Heidi Chase; Simi Mehta; Arjun Kumar; Anshula Mehta
About the Book
Vision is not only critical to an individual’s growth and development but also has direct implications for national and global development. It holds the potential to boost the global economy in a fair and equitable manner. It enables everyone to live their lives to the fullest, releasing their potential to learn, to work, and to lead fulfilled and productive lives. This study examines the direct and indirect implications of eye health care on the attainment of Sustainable Development Goals, thereby making it contingent upon policymakers to invest in the ‘vision for all’.
This study makes the case for vision as a priority national development issue in India and advocates the need to raise sufficient resources and commitment to attain the goals of the initiative. India has been a frontrunner in ensuring eye care for its population, by instituting programmes like the National Programme for Control of Blindness and Visual Impairment (NPCBVI) (1976), and subsequently has made remarkable progress. However, owing to the challenges in catering to a large population, and evident gaps, a renewed thrust towards comprehensive and universal eye care is required. Despite of majority of the causes of vision impairment are preventable or addressable through timely detection and screening, yet eyecare is not an integral part of universal health coverage. The early advantage due to NPCB has now diminished and country is struggling to complete the cataract surgery backlog. However, at the same time, the high prevalence of refractive error is a huge concern for the country.