There are many barriers to quality healthcare in India, and one of the biggest is poverty. Poverty doesn’t only mean that an individual is unable to pay for his or her medical treatment at a trusted facility, but often manifests as an inability to travel to healthcare.
Since specialist healthcare institutions are generally located within the capital cities of different states, marginalized and poverty-ridden Indians often find it difficult to even travel to these institutions.
One such story is that of Rama Krishna, who is a 48-year-old manual labourer. For several years, Rama Krishna’s work and earnings supported his entire family, which consisted of his wife and two kids. For every two hours of work, Rama Krishna used to earn Rs. 100 – equivalent to $1.34 It wasn’t much, but it was enough to look after his family.
However, for two years, Rama was not able to work due to his poor visual acuity. Rama was not able to perform menial tasks and even found it difficult to identify people who would walk past him. Due to Rama Krishna losing his eyesight and his job, his wife was forced to take up work to support the entire family. Along with losing his eyesight and job, Rama Krishna also felt like he was slowly losing his respect as people would often bully him.
His ordeal reached a turning point when he presented his case to the doctors at the Tej Kohli Cornea Institute. Rama was able to access these specialist doctors at a secondary centre named Swarna Bharat Eye Centre in Nellore.
Upon examination, the doctors noticed that he had an early cataract and corneal scars, which is also known as spheroidal degeneration of the corneas; which is characterized by the development of small, white to golden spheroids in the cornea.
The doctors at the Tej Kohli Cornea Institute reaffirmed that he would be fine and that his vision would also improve after treatment for his corneas and cataract. The doctors proceeded with his treatment, by removing his scars by separating the layers of the cornea. After a successful and free of cost procedure, Rama is now able to see properly through one eye. His other eye is still yet to be treated.