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Turkish physicians operate with flashlight
Turkish doctors in Somalia for “Africa Cataract Project” are performing cataract surgeries with the help of flashlight due to power cuts.
Africa, Somalia 17.09.2012

Within the scope of the “Africa Cataract Project” launched in the Somali capital Mogadishu, Turkish and Somali doctors will perform 1,000 cataract surgeries in 10 days. Cataract surgeries have started to be carried out in Mogadishu under the leadership of Turkish physicians as part of the “Africa Cataract Project,” which is jointly conducted by the World Health Organization and IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation.

The patients coming to National Eye Center for medical treatment underwent surgery in groups of three following examination. The surgeries were carried out by Turkish doctors HasanHüseyinUysal, Osman Dursun, and a Somali team.

Surgeries went on despite power outage

Operations were interrupted by power outage in the eye clinic. However, the doctors resumed surgeries with the help of flashlights brought in by clinic personnel. Dr. Uysal said they were working under difficult conditions and added “We can hardly see anything while working. May Allah help us and the patients.”

Operations and power supply resumed after 40-minute disruption when the power generator was fixed.The doctors warned the patients who had undergone surgery to come for examination regularly.

“Huge support from Turkey”

Chief of Medicine at National Eye Center Abdussamed Hassan Muhammed noted that the number of cataract patients in the country was growing day by day, adding “The number of cataract sufferers is rising incessantly since the central government has been unable to function since 1990. We have been operating only for a year. Although no survey has been conducted, six percent of the Somali population is estimated to be suffering from cataracts. And most of the eye diseases are caused by cataracts.”

Turkey has been carrying out a very significant project to fight eye diseases, Muhammed said, “The project will go on for 10 days. We are aiming to operate on 1,000 people in this time. Initially, 400 patients have registered to receive treatment. However, we are expecting the number to rise considerably once operations have begun.”

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