Nitin Verma on behalf of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, Australia



Setting up teleophthalmology services and improving the management of ocular emergencies in Timor Leste, Indonesia


The project

The vast majority of the population of Timor Leste live in remote areas, meaning access to eye care services is challenging. The Timor Leste program started in July 2000 with the view of reducing the prevalence of avoidable blindness by improving the access and quality of eye care in remote areas. As a result of this program, four ophthalmologists are now fully trained to serve a population of 1.1 million people.

With XOVA funding, this project aims to initiate teleophthalmology services to enable Timorese patients to access ophthalmic care, and to allow the local ophthalmologists to seek expert opinion in diagnosis and treatment from international eye surgeons.



During the two years after receiving XOVA funding, two photo slit lamps and accompanying computers and software were purchased and installed at Dili National Hospital and Maliana referral hospital. Teleophthalmology services are now available in five of the six major hospitals in Timor Leste. The education program was also successful, with 12 vision technicians, nine eye-care nurses and four other eye health personnel completing training in effective management of ocular emergencies. Additionally, a manual on ocular emergencies has been translated into Indonesian for distribution to eye-care nurses and emergency department staff in each of the hospitals.


Last update September 2012.



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