Sightsavers has received an award from the West African Health Organisation (WAHO) for its work to improve the capacity of health centres and train eye health workers in the region.
The award comes as health ministers from West Africa gather in Abuja, Nigeria, for a meeting of the Assembly of the Economic Community of West African States.
As part of its work with WAHO, Sightsavers has established training programmes in both English- and French-speaking countries in West Africa to train ophthalmologists, senior ophthalmic medical assistants, refractionists and other eye health workers.
Other flagship Sightsavers programmes being recognised are the Sheikh Zayed Regional Eye Care Centre in The Gambia, where Sightsavers has built a training hospital for eye health staff, and delivering the Health for Peace Initiative, which established good-quality, accessible and affordable eye care services in Senegal, Guinea Bissau and The Gambia.
Sightsavers’ Regional Director for West Africa, Bakary Marong, said: “The support of WAHO has been instrumental in helping to train health workers and strengthening eye health services, including in the countries recovering from 2014’s Ebola outbreak. It has also provided strong backing for our efforts to support governments to develop sustainable eye health services.”