National Prevention of Blindness Committee

Study: Over 40,000 people in PNG suffer blindness

The RAAB is a population-based survey to assess the prevalence of blindness and vision impairment, its main causes, the output and quality of cataract surgery and other indicators for eye care services.

The study was conducted by the National Prevention of Blindness Committee (PBL) carried out at 100 randomly selected communities in PNG.

The study determined the primary cause of blindness, which is untreated cataract, and revealed that 67,987 people are blind in one eye.

Survey on eye disease underway in PNG

Trachoma is an infection of the eyes that may result in blindness after repeated re-infections.

It is the world's leading cause of preventable blindness and occurs where people live in overcrowded conditions with limited access to water and health care.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that six million people worldwide are blind due to trachoma and more than 150 million people are in need of treatment.

Chief eye doctor in PNG Dr Simon Melengas said with the dry season affecting the country, this disease is most likely to affect the communities.