BASSETERRE, St. Kitts — The Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis joins the rest of the world in observing World Glaucoma Week, which is being celebrated locally with a calendar of events that run from March 7 to 13, under the global theme: “The World is Bright Save Your Sight.”
Declaring World Glaucoma Week open, on March 7, Minister of Health et al. the Honourable Akilah Byron-Nisbett, reflected on the theme indicating that is it imperative to promote the awareness of glaucoma.
“The theme reflects the hope that with regular testing people will continue to see the world around them, a world full of beauty and adventure and opportunities,” said the Hon. Byron-Nisbett. “And while the theme may seem somewhat poetic, it greatly adapts to local conditions and fosters unifying effort to promote effective community public awareness of the disease.”
She outlined several activities to be held in the Federation and encouraged the public to support and participate in the events.
The calendar of events includes an Awareness Day on March 8; Glaucoma discussions at the Ophthalmic Unit at Joseph N France General Hospital on March 9; Surgery day on March 10; and a Lecture by Ophthalmologist Dr. Francisca Nunez on March 11. On Friday, March 12, World Glaucoma Day, the unit has organized a Grab-and-Go Bake Sale.
The week will climax on Saturday, March 13 with a Glaucoma Awareness Walk and breakfast starting at 5 a.m. from the Cenotaph (War Memorial) to the Basseterre Fisheries Complex and back.
“Let us celebrate with our ophthalmic staff as they promote healthy eyes and protect our families and communities from glaucoma,” said Byron-Nisbett. “It is imperative for our healthcare system and practitioners to eliminate glaucoma, blindness through advocacy for universal access to international standard glaucoma care, promoting evidence-based practice and encouraging scientific research and glaucoma education for patients and caregivers.”
Byron-Nisbett congratulated the staff at the Ophthalmic Unit for promoting the awareness of glaucoma.
“The Ministry of Health…salutes them for alerting members of the broader community to the need for regular eye checks which allow earlier detection,” said Byron-Nisbett. “They promote retention of sight and prevent irreversible blindness. Indeed, the urgent need for action cannot be underestimated.”
The minister encouraged people to wear green throughout the week to support the theme.
World Glaucoma Week, commenced in March 2010 as a joint initiative between the World Glaucoma Association and the World Glaucoma Patient Association.