GRACE VISION PROGRAMME DURING COVID-19 - UPDATE

Grace Vision has been operating during the pandemic. Following guidelines from the National and Eastern Cape Department of Health with whom we have our MOU, we have been operating in a restricted form. As with all state ophthalmology departments, we have been limited to examining urgent and emergency patients in the Grace Vision premises at the Zithulele hospital and the Canzibe Hospital. The following is how operations have proceeded and facilities utilized:

  • We have been phoning patients who require critical chronic eye medication and dropping it off at their clinics for them to collect and spectacles which were not collected or in production during lockdown. This is being done every week to cover the 26 clinics we serve and repeated to continue each month with chronic medication.
  • Our team has been involved in making and distributing of masks for COVID-19 relief and support for the vulnerable community. In addition, they are helping at the hospital gate for screening and triage.
  • Our accommodation units (normally used for surgeons or theatre sisters) have been utilized by the hospital for isolation of personnel who are COVID positive.
  • Schools in the area have been closed for long periods and then briefly open so we are encouraging any urgent needs to be sent to Grace Vision at the hospital and will screen children at the clinics as we are soon starting with our clinic outreach.
  • As the virus will continue for the foreseeable future, we have re-invented how we will operate safely for our patients and staff. We will shortly start our mobile clinic outreach with very strict safety protocols in place. Following expert advice from various medical specialists, there is a detailed protocol of how we will examine patients and how we will maximize patient and staff safety. Patient numbers will have to be less due to sanitising equipment and examination area after each patient. Extensive PPE for staff and social distancing and masks for patients will be ensured.
  • Cataract surgeries will be on hold for a while longer as we await the go ahead from Department of Health ophthalmology.
  • While COVID-19 has changed the world and the way we can operate, but we are thankful that we can now get back to serving the eye care of poor and vulnerable in our rural area.
  • Grace Vision is very thankful to all funders, both corporate and private for the impact that they have had and will continue to have on the poorest and often neglected rural population. We are dedicated to working tirelessly at serving this need to the best of our ability and in the most effective way in all circumstances.

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Grace Vision Blog

Grace Vision's progress made in Zithulele area clinics

Since 2012 Grace Vision has been assisting the Zithulele Hospital in providing primary eye care to patients attending the health clinics serving their rural catchment population of 130000. The corona virus has stopped work. This presents an opportunity to review the results achieved. All results relate to the periods ending 31 March of the year.

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Through the Eyes of Grace Vision’s Optometrist

Charlotte and I have been here at Zithulele with the Grace Vision programme for a few months now.

We have settled well into rural life in the Eastern Cape. We started in full flight with a busy time, in both the mobile clinic and school screenings. It also included a day of cataract surgery. I have seen many patients with severe eyecare needs.

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Meet Lwazi

Lwazi is a 17 year old boy, currently only in Grade 7 at a rural school near Canzibe Hospital. 17 year old boys should be either in grade 12, or already finished high school. However, Lwazi has been unable to pass any grade up to 2018, and was merely pushed up due to his age.

When Grace Vision visited the school, we discovered that Lwazi was legally blind, only able to see blurred images of what was in his field of vision. If he held something up against his nose, he could barely make out what it was.

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Young Lives Given Equal Chances

While interacting with the communities in rural Eastern Cape where we are based, we noticed that no children in the schools were wearing spectacles. Could it be, that in rural communities sight amongst children is 20/20?

We began a programnme of sytematically visiting each of the 127 schools servicing the Zithulele community and surrounds, and to date have screened close to 10,000 schoolgoing children for visual impairment.

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The Power of Ten ! – A lesson in appreciation.

Only Ten Rand????…….. It cost almost half that to mail it to us !! I received a hand written envelope addressed to Grace Vision recently, with a postage stamp on it. It was from an elderly lady in the city of Durban, and contained a small note, in shaky handwriting, and a crumpled R10 note…

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Grace Vision exceeds all expections in 2016!

Thanks to our amazing team at Zithulele who have worked tirelessly throughout the year, Grace Vision has exceeded all expectations for the year 2016.

We screened more patients than any previous year, treated more eye complaints, distributed more pairs of glasses and performed more cataract surgeries.

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Sight Restored!

Our Volunteer surgeons completed 18 sight restoring surgeries today!In rural Africa, the ability to see is crucial to survival. Village life is communal life, and all contribute to sustain the livelihood of the family and community. Blindness removes a critical components of the community support system, and has a downward spiralling knock-on effect.

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1000 Cataract Surgeries Completed By Grace Vision !

In June 2016, sight was restored to the 1000th person blind from cataracts in the deep rural area where Grace Vision works. We thank God for His provision and enabling to change the lives of not only those who were unnecessarily blind, but also their families and close communities. Almost EVERY person who is blind…

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Grace Vision To Help With Cataract Backlog

The Grace Vision Primary Eye Care Model has been noticed by the Eastern Cape Department of Health as a well managed, and efficient programme, ideal for serving the poorest rural communities of Africa. The model has taken 4 years of experimenting and tweaking to arrive at what we have at present. Our thanks to Dr…

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67 Cataracts Scheduled To Honour Mandela Day

This week marks Mandela Day in South Africa, and in honour of Madiba, Grace Vision has scheduled 67 free sight restoring cataract surgeries for impoverished communities in rural Eastern Cape. Dr Claudine Lee from KZN has graciously volunteered her time and skills to perform most of the surgeries from Monday to Thursday, while a surgeon…

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Grace and Dignity

NPC: 1998/18381/08
NPO: 006-142 NPO
PBO: 930 027 945

Operational Address:

Zithulele Mission
Hospital
Zithulele Village
Mqanduli District 5080
Eastern Cape
South Africa

Physical Address:

4 Kendal Mews
134 Main Rd, Diep River
Cape Town
7800

Mailing Address:

PO Box 290
Plumstead 7801
Cape Town
South Africa

GRACE VISION PROGRAMME DURING COVID-19 - UPDATE

Grace Vision has been operating during the pandemic. Following guidelines from the National and Eastern Cape Department of Health with whom we have our MOU, we have been operating in a restricted form. As with all state ophthalmology departments, we have been limited to examining urgent and emergency patients in the Grace Vision premises at the Zithulele hospital and the Canzibe Hospital. The following is how operations have proceeded and facilities utilized:

  • We have been phoning patients who require critical chronic eye medication and dropping it off at their clinics for them to collect and spectacles which were not collected or in production during lockdown. This is being done every week to cover the 26 clinics we serve and repeated to continue each month with chronic medication.
  • Our team has been involved in making and distributing of masks for COVID-19 relief and support for the vulnerable community. In addition, they are helping at the hospital gate for screening and triage.
  • Our accommodation units (normally used for surgeons or theatre sisters) have been utilized by the hospital for isolation of personnel who are COVID positive.
  • Schools in the area have been closed for long periods and then briefly open so we are encouraging any urgent needs to be sent to Grace Vision at the hospital and will screen children at the clinics as we are soon starting with our clinic outreach.
  • As the virus will continue for the foreseeable future, we have re-invented how we will operate safely for our patients and staff. We will shortly start our mobile clinic outreach with very strict safety protocols in place. Following expert advice from various medical specialists, there is a detailed protocol of how we will examine patients and how we will maximize patient and staff safety. Patient numbers will have to be less due to sanitising equipment and examination area after each patient. Extensive PPE for staff and social distancing and masks for patients will be ensured.
  • Cataract surgeries will be on hold for a while longer as we await the go ahead from Department of Health ophthalmology.
  • While COVID-19 has changed the world and the way we can operate, but we are thankful that we can now get back to serving the eye care of poor and vulnerable in our rural area.
  • Grace Vision is very thankful to all funders, both corporate and private for the impact that they have had and will continue to have on the poorest and often neglected rural population. We are dedicated to working tirelessly at serving this need to the best of our ability and in the most effective way in all circumstances.

Please close the box by pressing the x at the top or just click outside the box to continue to website

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