Symposium to be held in Pune to raise awareness on retinopathy prevention

Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) is a potentially permanent blinding eye disorder that primarily affects premature infants i.e. born earlier by 3 weeks or more, than due date and weighing less

Image source: Google
Image source: Google

Survival of premature babies is increasing in India due to the improvements in neonatal intensive care services, and the efforts of all stakeholders including the Government of India.

The increased survival of these tiny and vulnerable infants may come at a cost of increased complications due to prematurity and its management.

An important symposium for prevention of blindness in premature and sick babies will be organised in Pune on June 28. The symposium is being organised with the help of Indian Academy of Paediatrics, National Neonatology forum and Public Health Foundation. The government has deputed medial officers from all districts to attend the important learning program.

Based on current data it is feared that an epidemic of preventable blindness may occur in developing nations such as India, if strategies for prevention and treatment of ROP are not in place.

Increasing awareness about ROP amongst health care providers and also the parents of these babies and general population is thus important.

Dr Sandeep Kadam, neonatologist and pediatrician, who is conveyor of the symposium, said, “Hence a symposium is organised in Pune to address these crucial issues in the context of the state of Maharashtra. Some of the top experts in this field from India and Australia ( Dr Sam Ebenzer (Perth, Australia), Dr Anand Vinekar (Bangalore) and some others have come together to increase awareness and spread the knowledge about ROP in all sections of the community.”

“Their aim is to develop a strategic collaboration between all stakeholders in the state, to deal with this potentially serious public health issue affecting the tiny survivors of prematurity,” he added.

Assuring a network of personnel and facilities in urban and rural parts of the country is critical if the impending epidemic of ROP is to be prevented.