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World Sight Day

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World Sight Day 2013 poster

This year, WHO celebrated World Sight Day in Egypt on 10 October, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and Population and partner nongovernmental organizations, to focus attention on the global issue of avoidable blindness and visual impairment. The celebration aimed to increase public awareness on the magnitude of the problem of blindness and visual impairment and influence policy-makers to support and improve the national eye health programme.

The theme of this year's campaign is "Universal eye health", under the slogan of "Get your eyes tested". As we age, vision in general deteriorates. As a result, eye specialists recommend regular eye checks to detect causes of blindness and visual impairment.

The theme and the call for action are very appropriate for Egypt, which has approximately 1 million people blind and 3 million visually impaired. Nearly 60% of the visually impaired in Egypt have cataract, which requires a simple surgical operation to correct.

This year marks the launch of a new WHO Action Plan on Prevention of Avoidable Blindness and Visual Impairment 2014–2019. The Action Plan focuses on "increasing access to comprehensive eye care services that are integrated into the health system."

Related link

Regional control and prevention of blindness programme

Visual impairment and blindness factsheet

Key health-related statistics

Total health expenditure (% of Gross Domestic Product) 5.6
Primary health care centres and units (per 10 000 population) 0.6
Total life expectancy at birth (years) 73.2

Source: Country statistical profiles (2016)

Egypt country health profile

Global Health Observatory. Egypt statistics summary (2002–present)

Regional Health Observatory