The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust, a UK based charitable foundation, has planned more initiatives in Bangladesh to raise awareness to prevent blindness caused by retinopathy.
“We have planned various programmes at community level for creating awareness to prevent blindness caused by diabetic encouraging people with diabetes to seek treatment for vision problems related to diabetes,” visiting Chief Executive of the Trust Dr Astrid Bonfield told BSS today.
“In Bangladesh, the issue is exacerbated by the fact that over half of all cases of diabetes are undiagnosed, she said.
Emphasizing on early screening Bonfield said, “It is essential for all those with diabetes receive early screening, treatment and appropriate follow-up care to reduce the risk of severe vision loss by 95 per cent.”
“We have organised workshops about the disease and organised different programmes of dance and song, designed to spread messages about how those with diabetes can manage the condition and undergo regular screening to help preserve their sight,’ she added.
Diabetic Retinopathy is the leading cause of blindness in working-age adults. It is caused when poor control of blood sugar levels, high blood pressure and high lipid levels in the blood damage the blood vessels in the retina.
The disease does not present any early symptoms – people can have the condition for many years without knowing it. Once vision deteriorates it is often too late for treatment.
Diabetic retinopathy affects blood vessels in the light-sensitive tissue called the retina that lines the back of the eye. It is the most common cause of vision loss among people with diabetes and the leading cause of vision impairment and blindness among working-age adults.
According to a data of International Diabetes Federation, there were 5.9 million cases of diabetes in Bangladesh in 2014, which is increasing rapidly. As per International Diabetic Foundation (IDF), diabetes prevalence in Bangladesh would reach 12 Million by 2035 posing a big challenge to health system.
The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust is a charitable foundation established in 2012 to mark and celebrate of the Queen’s sixty-year contribution to the Commonwealth.
The trust work with governments, corporate partners, trusts, foundations, community groups and individuals across the Commonwealth countries.
The mission of the trust is to enrich the lives of people from all backgrounds within the Commonwealth by working with partners towards eliminating avoidable blindness and empowering a new generation of young leaders.