The Flying Eye Hospital - ORBIS
DOHA: HRH Sophie the Countess of Wessex will be arriving in Doha today as part of an international campaign to raise awareness on prevention and treatment of blindness, an affliction that affects some 1.5 million children around the world.
The Countess will be accompanied by the renowned ORBIS Flying Eye Hospital - the world’s only eye hospital housed within a DC-10 airplane.
The Countess of Wessex, who is a longstanding patron of global initiatives to prevent and treat blindness among underprivileged communities around the world, will lead a series of events and meetings in Qatar to build on the strong partnerships and alliances that were forged last year when ORBIS made its inaugural visit to Qatar.
The Countess of Wessex will participate in a series of tours for local organisations in Qatar to visit the aircraft and experience its sophisticated facilities, which include a fully equipped ophthalmic operating suite, a four bed pre-operation and recovery room, as well as a sub sterile and laser room.
The Countess’ visit to Doha in conjunction with the ORBIS Flying Eye Hospital is part of the organisation’s goodwill tour to build on the crucial support that enables it to expand its sight-saving efforts throughout Asia, Africa and Latin America. Close to 90 per cent of the world’s visually impaired live in developing countries.
According to ORBIS, 80 percent of all visual impairment can be avoided or cured, which makes its Flying Eye Hospital a vital lifeline for many of those affected.
“DIA is truly honoured to welcome HRH the Countess of Wessex to Doha and to support the important global cause of preventing avoidable child blindness. We also look forward to once again host ORBIS on our airport grounds and provide the community in Qatar with the opportunity to witness the incredible work that the organisation is doing to train eye care experts and extend sight-saving care to millions of communities around the world through its Flying Eye Hospital,” said Akbar Al Baker, CEO of Qatar Airways and DIA.