Inauguration of the New Building
Aravind – Tirunelveli, April 16
The pressure for expansion has been long felt at Aravind-Tirunelveli. For over a decade ago, the staff have, with great difficulty, made do with the available space to handle the ever growing volume of patients. With perseverance, Aravind-Tirunelveli has finally inaugurated the new building. This new building has state-of-the-art eye care facilities. With the addition of the new facility Aravind – Tirunelveli can accommodate about 3,500 outpatients and can perform 300 to 350 surgeries at the 14 operating theatres. It was inaugurated by Padma Shri Nivedita Bide, Vice President, Vivekananda Kendra, Kanyakumari in the presence of Dr. K. P. Karthikeyan, IAS District Collector, Tirunelveli.
Dr. R. Ramakrishnan, Advisor, Aravind-Tirunelveli welcomed the audience. Padma Shri Nivedita Bide spoke about the service provided by Aravind from her firsthand experience of being a patient at Aravind for the past several years. Dr. Karthikeyan reminisced about his connection to Aravind Eye Hospitals and how he used to watch the hospital’s outreach camps benefiting the people of his village. Dr. P. Namperumalsamy, Chairman Emeritus, AECS spoke on starting a Regional Research Centre at Tirunelveli with Aravind Medical Research Foundation, Madurai as the head office. Dr. R. D. Ravindran, Chairman, AECS gave an overview about Aravind Eye Care System. Dr. S. Aravind, Director – Projects gave an overview of the new building at Tirunelveli and also about the various projects in the pipeline. The whole construction team was recognised and presented with a memento and gift. Dr. R. Meenakshi, Chief Medical Officer, Aravind-Tirunelveli, proposed the vote of thanks.
Creche Graduation Ceremony
Aravind-Madurai, March 27
After a gap of three years, Janakiamma Child Care Centre organised the Graduation Day for the tiny tots who were joining the school this year. Five children graduated this year with the rightly termed title ‘Ready for School’ Thulasiraj Ravilla, Director-Operations, and Dr. S. R. Krishnadas, Director–HR, AECS, presented the graduation certificate and hood to the little ones. This being the 25th anniversary of the crèche, Dr. Krishnadas reminisced about Janaky Amma and how she took care of all staff and their families in the initial years. Selvi, senior housekeeping staff, also shared her memories of working with Janaky Amma.
World Optometry Day
Aravind-Tirunelveli, March 24
Aravind Tirunelveli observed World Optometry Day with events such as an awareness exhibition, quiz, and dance programme for the AOPs. A darkroom was set up for staff to experience the world of the visually impaired. The darkroom along with audio effects has produced a unique experience.
Workshop on Care and Maintenance of Ophthalmic Instruments and Equipment
Aravind-Tirupati, March 18
The workshop was conducted by the Biomedical Engineering Team of Aravind Eye Hospitals. A total of 89 participants, including 20 ophthalmologists, OT technicians, ophthalmic technicians, ophthalmic assistants, and biomedical technicians from in and around Andhra Pradesh and Telangana took part. About 20 faulty equipments brought in by the participants were repaired free of cost during the workshop.
During the workshop, A Hand Book on Ophthalmic Instruments and Equipment Maintenance developed by the biomedical engineering team of Aravind-Madurai was launched by Dr. Sri Hari, Former President, Andhra Pradesh Ophthalmic Association. The book will serve as a good resource material for allied ophthalmic personnel.
Inauguration of Vikkravandi Vision Centre
Aravind – Pondicherry, March 17
106th Vision Centre of Aravind Eye Care System was inaugurated at Vikravandi by M. Abdul Salam, Chairman, Town Panchayath – Vikkravandi, V. Thirunavakarasu, Retired General Manager of MAC Agro Industries and Dr. R. Venkatesh, Chief Medical Officer, Aravind-Pondicherry. The centre will be managed by Aravind-Pondicherry and is funded by the SEVA-SCB grant. With the establishment of this centre, the number of vision centres run by Aravind-Pondicherry rises to 17 and the total number of all Aravind Vision Centres to 108.
Eye Donation Awareness Programme
Aravind-Madurai / Kumbakonam, March 16
An eye donation awareness programme was organised in partnership with the NSS Unit of Government Engineering College, Kumbakonam. D. Saravanan, Manager, Rotary Aravind International Eye Bank, Aravind-Madurai handled the session for a total of 40 students.
World Glaucoma Week
Aravind, March 12-18
World Glaucoma Week is a joint initiative of the World Glaucoma Association (WGA) and the World Glaucoma Patient Committee (WGPC). This global initiative aims to raise awareness on glaucoma. Aravind Eye Hospitals engaged in a series of activities throughout the week to take the global message to every nook and corner. The hospitals conducted a wide range of events such as awareness exhibitions, focus group discussions, awareness creation on follow-up and family screening, radio talks and interactive sessions with the public, quiz programmes, press meets, published awareness articles in newspapers, awareness walk, etc. Moreover, short video clips on glaucoma were shared via social media and displayed in the patient waiting areas of the hospital. Patient interaction meeting and awareness talks were organised for the attenders of daycare patients. Glaucoma screening camps were conducted in which patients identified with glaucoma were advised for further treatment at the base hospital. Glaucoma consultants participated in various CMEs and educated undergraduate and postgraduate students, optometrists, and nursing students.
Banners were displayed at prominent places in the hospital to create awareness. Pamphlets on glaucoma and the importance of family screening were distributed to patients and attenders. A flash mob dance was performed by students of Mahatma Gandhi Medical College, arranged by Aravind-Pondicherry. Throughout the month of March, an awareness message on glaucoma was set as a caller tune on the hospital landline phone number.
Central CME for Staff of Vision Centres
Aravind-Madurai, March 10-12
A Central CME for all the staff of Aravind Vision Centres was conducted by the Central Vision Centre team under the guidance of Dr. Usha Kim, Director, AOP. Senior Leaders of Aravind, Dr. P. Namperumalsamy, Chairman Emeritus, Dr. G. Natchiar, Director Emeritus and Dr. R. D. Ravindran, Chairman, and Dr. Kim, Chief Medical Officer, Aravind-Madurai addressed the participants and shared their views on the importance of vision centres. The three-day event included the following:
- Clinical assessment for all vision technicians and co-ordinators based on Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE)
- Skill assessment conducted by senior MLOPs and doctors from Aravind-Madurai with assistance from Dr. A. Kowsalya, Incharge Medical Officer – Vision Centres, and Medical Officers, V. Balaji, Dr. M. Sivadharshan and Dr. R. Janani and the Aurosiksha team.
- Soft skills development sessions, quiz on decision making in tough clinical situations at vision centres
- Fun activities such as skit, library quiz, and poster-making pertaining to Ophthalmology
A total of 190 staff from across 105 Vision Centres participated in the event and demonstrated a high level of energy and enthusiasm. The vision centre staff were recognised with the best performance awards. Also, prizes were given to the winners of the competition at the event held at Aurofarm.
Medical Officers, Postgraduate doctors, Vision Centre Central office team – Jhansi Sunytha, Pitchaimeena, Adhiparasakthi, Nagalingam, Raman, and Rajapandiyan played an active role in the smooth conduct of the event.
Women’s Day Celebration
Aravind–Tirunelveli, March 8
As part of International Women’s Day, Aravind-Tirunelveli invited Sornalatha, a leading lawyer and social activist from Tuticorin, to deliver a motivational speech. In her speech, she quoted many practical and appropriate examples and made the event an interesting one.
Tour for Housekeeping Staff
Aravind–Chennai, March 5
Aravind-Chennai organised a programme for its housekeeping staff to visit Ratnagiri Murugan Temple, Vellore Golden Temple, and Vellore Fort. A team of 36 staff members participated in the tour. Everyone in the team was extremely delighted and grateful for arranging such a memorable trip.