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Narayana Nethralaya bags natl award for premature infant blindness prevention

Our Bureau, Bengaluru
Saturday, November 17, 2012, 11:00 Hrs  [IST]

Bangalore based Narayana Nethralaya Postgraduate Institute of Ophthalmology’s flagship Tele-Ophthalmology programme, KIDROP (Karnataka Internet Assisted Diagnosis of Retinopathy of Prematurity) was awarded the prestigious “Innovation in Healthcare through PPP” Public Choice award.

The event titled e-India awards was held at Hyderabad on November 15, 2012.

KIDROP was initiated in 2007 by Narayana Nethralaya and became the first PPP in the country to combat infant blindness in collaboration with the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM), Govt. of Karnataka since 2009. With over 18 districts covered, and a state-wide expansion plan in progress, over 26,000 infant imaging sessions and over 800 vision saving treatments have been performed in premature infants, a few weeks old in rural outreach centres at no cost to the patient. KIDROP is now the world's largest single centre managed Tele-ROP network

KIDROP is India’s first and now the world’s largest tele-medicine network for tackling infant blindness. This indigenously developed customized tele-ophthalmology platform, is focused on preventing blindness from Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP), which is the leading cause of infant blindness worldwide. The project seeks to create a network using tele-medicine to prevent, screen and treat infant blindness in rural infants who lack access to care with a focus on Retinopathy of Prematurity. The unique model has been studied by the Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad and cited by Harvard Business Review and has won several service and innovation awards.

According to Dr Bhujang Shetty, chairman of Narayana Nethralaya “our efforts in collaboration with the Government has received the recognition”.

Dr Anand Vinekar, KIDROP Programme Director, who received the award on behalf of the team said, that the PPP award has provided the right impetus for us to expand this model to other states of our country to benefit thousands of babies born in our rural hospitals who risk blindness. The award incidentally coincides with the World Prematurity Day celebrated world over on November 17. One in 10 babies born in the world are said to be premature and risk ROP blindness.


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