Sightsavers India launches its new endeavour: India Fellowship Program 2019

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New Delhi: Sightsavers unveiled its India Fellowship Program today. Sightsavers is a global leading development organisation that has been working in the field of eye health, disability and inclusive education since 1966 in India. The India Fellowship Program is a first of its kind initiative that will identify up to 10 promising young ophthalmologists from all over the country. This program aims to groom the young ophthalmologists through an innovative course of mentoring and surgical exposure to expand their perspectives on rural eye health and to shape the youth into promising and skilled ophthalmologists.

Preventable blindness continues to be a major eye health issue in the country. It’s a challenge that can only be surmounted by having adequate eye health services in the remote locations of the country led by skilled ophthalmologists. Thus, Sightsavers came up with India Fellowship Program, an opportunity for promising and passionate young ophthalmologists to get trained at some of the leading eye health institutes in India. The selected fellows will be placed in one of the 8 states – Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Chhattisgarh and Odisha.

The shortlisted Fellows will get a chance to use their skills and knowledge acquired at the course of the fellowship program and from their medical student journey days in the real world scenario while being placed under Sightsavers India Eye Health Programme. The selected candidates will be placed under Sightsavers’ partner hospitals. This will be a huge step towards better eye care facilities in rural India and upskilling of the young ophthalmologists.

Mr. Kabir Bedi, Brand Ambassador, Sightsavers India said, “Sightsavers India Fellowship Program is a unique initiative for the young ophthalmologists to embark on an exciting journey of 24 months and learn along with established ophthalmologists, researchers and educators. During the course of the program, the selected ophthalmologists will be given 24 months of structured process of learning, hands-on surgical, clinical training at leading eye health institutions, exciting regional postings along with international exposure and residential facility.“

Speaking on the initiation of the India Fellowship Program, Mr RN Mohanty, CEO at Sightsavers India said, “The program’s vision is to cultivate a capable and competent workforce in the eye care field for rural India. Currently, there are nearly 18,000 Ophthalmologists present in the country, which is nowhere near enough with respect to the ratio of the population in the country. India needs more ophthalmologists. Thus, Sightsavers has come up with fellowship program for the future ophthalmologists. We aim to train and groom motivated youths to help them transform into exceptionally skilled ophthalmologists early in their career. With this new initiative we hope to bring about positive substantial impact in the society.”

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