ClockThursday, 20/06/2024 08:55

Volunteer surgeries for highland residents

TTH.VN - Over 150 highland residents from Nam Dong and A Luoi received free cataract surgeries, returning to their daily lives. This is the result of two meaningful volunteer surgery missions led by Professor Hattori Tadashi from Hue Eye Hospital and other humanitarian organizations.

Professor Hattori - an honorable citizen with a compassionate heart

 Professor Hattori Tadashi and his surgical team performed operation for patients from the highland

Excitedly waiting for surgery

Participating in both surgical missions, we felt the anticipation and excitement of the patients, as they eagerly yearned to see light again, to see their grandchildren, to resume farming and garden care. For these highland residents facing difficulties, these were lofty dreams.

Early in the morning, family members gathered to await the arrival of the medical team from Hue. Among the 150 patients who received free surgeries were some special cases, including centenarians, mother-child pairs, and couples...

Mrs. Nguyen Thi Nhu and her husband, Mr. Tran Minh Xiu, both over 70 years old and from the Ka Tu ethnic group in Huong Huu commune, Nam Dong, were thrilled to undergo eye surgeries this time. Since 2022, after a fall, Mr. Xiu's eyes gradually deteriorated, confining him to the house for simple chores. Despite visiting the city for examinations, his surgeries were delayed due to high blood pressure and poor health. Mrs. Nhu's left eye was also affected by cataracts, making daily life challenging.

While waiting for her turn in the operating room, Mrs. Nhu said, "If I can see clearly again, I will tend to the garden and help our children. I fear becoming a burden to the family. We couldn't afford surgery in the city, so having it done here saves expenses and allows us to return home quickly. Many thanks to the doctors and the foreign expert team."

In A Luoi district, Mrs. Le Thi Ninh, over 100 years old from Hong Ha commune, and her son were both scheduled for surgeries on the same day. With two family members undergoing phacoemulsification, the whole family traveled to the district hospital for care and support. Mrs. Ninh needed guidance to move around, but her memory was sharp, engaging in conversations actively.

She recounted, "Living in darkness for so long, I couldn't clearly see my grandchildren's faces. When I sit somewhere and hear noises, I had to call out, 'who's there? what's happening?' If my eyesight returns, I'll finally see each grandchild's face, watch TV, and enjoy family gatherings, which will be the joy of my remaining years," the elderly patient from the Pa Ko ethnic group emotionally shared.

"Patients' restored eyesight brings me joy"

Dozens of hospital staff, volunteers, and Hue Eye Hospital personnel were mobilized to participate in the surgeries. Patients received pre-operative care, medication, instructions for eye care until their vision recovered.

Beforehand, extensive screening sessions were conducted. Professor Hattori Tadashi, a leading expert from Japan in the field of retinal and cataract surgeries, Managing Director of the Asia Pacific Vision Foundation, provided significant support by supplying a large portion of replacement intraocular lenses and other surgical materials needed for the surgeries.

Prior to this trip, Professor Hattori Tadashi performed free phacoemulsification surgeries for hundreds of patients in the Central Highlands. Despite the long journeys, he felt a bit pressured, but the sight of patients eagerly waiting provided him with motivation to continue his work. Together with other doctors, he assessed the patients' eye conditions before surgery, sitting on the ground to assist staff in classifying artificial intraocular lenses and related medications, continuously monitoring each surgical case.

According to Professor Hattori Tadashi, many people in remote mountainous areas suffer from eye diseases without access to surgical treatment. Throughout his 22 years of volunteering, he expressed his hope to bring sight to people, fulfilling the mission set by the Asia Pacific Vision Foundation.

The professor, with a heroic heart, shared: "In remote and distant areas where there is no specialized Eye Department, we bring along multiple modern machines to ensure the surgeries achieve the highest quality. I dedicate myself completely to treating patients, just as I would for my own loved ones. When I hear about impoverished patients, it only fuels my desire to help even more."

The distinguished physician, Specialized II Dr. Pham Minh Truong, despite his age, worked tirelessly to keep up with the surgical schedule alongside his team, having meals on the go and stealing moments for rest in the surgical ward corridors.

"These are two memorable surgeries for me as the former director of Hue Eye Hospital before retirement. We seized every hour and minute because among these patients are elderly people who have suffered from blindness for decades. The joy of patients regaining their eyesight outweighs any hardship. I hope to continue participating in this meaningful program in the years to come as a volunteer surgeon."

Ms. Tran Thi Hoai Tram, Secretary of the Nam Dong District Party Committee, remarked, "Nam Dong is a mountainous district where 43% are ethnic minorities. Providing healthcare and resources for specialized healthcare is challenging. The expert missions supporting surgical operations for residents are deeply humanitarian activities. I hope programs like this will take place regularly, not only in Nam Dong but also in remote areas to support eye care of local residents."

Experts not only carried out these surgeries to restore vision to the poor, but through these volunteer surgical missions, they have also transferred modern ophthalmic treatment techniques to Hue Eye Hospital doctors, enhancing the quality of eye care services, better serving the treatment and care of patients.

Story and photo: LINH TUE
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