The West Bengal government has made great efforts to offer affordable and high-quality eye care services, whether you want to ensure the health of your eyes or get free eye exams or cataract surgery for a loved one. A commitment to perform free cataract operations has been made through the National Programme of Control of Blindness (NPCB), both at government hospitals and in partnership with partner NGOs.
The range of eye care services and operations offered under the NPCB umbrella includes:
I. Cataract Surgery: Comprehensive cataract surgeries with Intraocular Lens (IOL) implantation, including advanced techniques like Phaco Emulsification with foldable lenses.
II. Diabetic Retinopathy: Management and treatment of diabetic-related eye conditions.
III. Childhood Blindness: Addressing eye health issues in children to ensure a brighter future.
IV. Keratoplasty: Corneal transplant procedures to restore vision.
V. Vitreoretinal Surgery: Advanced surgical interventions for retina-related problems.
It is significant to highlight that expenses for the aforementioned eye care procedures should only be provided from NPCB funding in hospitals under the Department of Health & Family Welfare, Government of West Bengal. The project places a strong emphasis on keeping expenses from programs like the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY) from crossing over or being double booked.
In addition, the West Bengal government's WB Chokher Alo Scheme 2023 promises to give senior residents free eye care and eyeglasses. By 2025, this innovative program hopes to provide eye care for everyone. With this plan:
Cataract operations for 20 lakh senior citizens are targeted.
8.25 lakh elderly individuals undergoing surgery will receive free spectacles.
10 lakh students will undergo eye tests, with 4 lakh receiving free spectacles.
Anganwadi workers will also benefit from free eye testing.
In a three-phase approach, the Chokher Alo Scheme has commenced, beginning with coverage of 1200 gram panchayats and 120 primary health centers. The subsequent phases will extend this initiative to more areas. Notably, the government is investing in advanced trauma-care facilities, ensuring a comprehensive healthcare approach.
While numerous government hospitals across Kolkata offer eye care services, prominent institutions include Kolkata Medical College and Hospital, R.G. Kar Medical College and Hospital, N.R.S Medical College and Hospital, National Medical College and Hospital, SSKM Hospital, and the Sushrut Eye Hospital in Salt Lake.
Please keep in mind that this information is intended for educational purposes and to provide an overview of available services. For personalized medical advice and care, it is recommended to consult with qualified healthcare professionals.