Eye screening uncovers complex health issues in JHS pupil, urgent aid needed

Eye screening uncovers complex health issues in JHS pupil, urgent aid needed

In a rare case, a 13-year-old Junior High School two ( 2) pupil of the Papu R/C JHS, Siita Ziyad, diagnosed with Myopia (the inability to see from afar) is also suffering from hearing and speech impairment.

Ziyad could only hear faintly when one speaks louder than normal and found it difficult pronouncing alphabets as well.

This was noticed by the (GNA) during an eye screening exercise for school children in the Sombo Circuit in the Nadowli-Kaleo District.

Mr. Alban S. K. Bagbin, the Speaker of , facilitated the free eye screening services for the children through the Blissful Sight for Kids (BS4Ks) project.

Bliss Eye Care, a private eye clinic in , is implementing the BS4Ks project in partnership with GhanaVision, a Swiss-based charity organisation.

Dr. Zakarea Al-Hassan Balure, the Manager of Bliss Eye Care, described the child's condition as worrying and stressed the need for comprehensive care for him saying, “Apart from the eye, the ear is another delicate organ.”

He reiterated the need for parents to take their children's care and well-being seriously as that was necessary for their proper growth and development.

Madam Magarette Bangnaah, the Head teacher of the Papu JHS, said she had contacted Ziyad's father about his condition and he assured her of buying a hearing aid for Ziyad but had since not done so.

“Looking at his performance in class, he could have done better if not because of the hearing problem. I was even thinking that they should send him to a special school.

I am even confused now, because they will soon be doing their school selection and I don't know which school to choose for him,” she said.

Madam Bangnaah, therefore, appealed to benevolent organisations, institutions and individuals, including the Speaker of Parliament, to come to the aid of Ziyad.

A total of 849 children from basic schools in the circuit and the Sombo Senior High School benefited from the screening exercise.

Out of the number, 145 of them had normal eyes, 672 had pathological issues relating to medication, 22 had Refractive Errors and needed eyeglasses, and ten had Cataract and Glaucoma.

Those who required medication and eyeglasses were offered for free while those who needed further attention were referred to the eye clinic for further assessment and treatment.

Mr. Bartholomew Nambazing, who represented the Speaker of Parliament at the screening, observed that the human eye was one of the important organs, and needed to be properly cared for.

He said the Speaker of Parliament had realised that, just like other communities in the district, access to eye care services for children in Sombo and adjourning communities was difficult and, in some instances, non-existent hence his decision to facilitate the free screening for the children.

He expressed gratitude to Bliss Eye Care and GhanaVision for responding to his request to extend their free eye screening intervention to Sombo for early detection and treatment of children with eye conditions to avoid preventable eyesight loss.

Mr. Martin Luther, the School Improvement Support Officer (SISO) in charge of Sombo Circuit, observed that visual impairment was a major factor that hindered children's progress in education.

He commended the Speaker of Parliament and Bliss Eye Care for the intervention and said it would go a long way to positively impact the children's education.

Some children who received the eyeglasses and medication thanked the benefactors for the intervention.

Ms. Clementia Suntaa, a student of the Nandom Technical Institute, told the GNA that in class, she draws closer to the board before seeing the writings on it.

Ms. Victoria Mwier, a student of Sawla Girls Vocational Institute, also said she had to send the book closer to her face before she could read from it, which was a source of worry.

Mr. Thomas Saana, the Assembly Member for Sombo East Electoral Area, appealed to the Speaker, Bliss Eye Care and its partners to extend the exercise to other parts of the district to help impact the lives of the children.

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