Ensuring women access services in India

 SEVA India 

This story highlights a story from LVPEI demonstrating one approach to ensure women are able to access services. It takes additional investment from hospital staff and community workers to ensure that women are able to access services.

Mrs. Ramdhani is a 72-year-old woman who lives in a village called Ingurri in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh. She was suffering from undiagnosed mature cataract in her right eye. She managed through her days and surrendered to her fate of poor vision with old age. Her husband was tasked with working alone in the fields and cooking meals for both of them. Her mental health was declining and she had loss hope for the future.

In the Kanpur area, a community health worker from Jawaharlal Rohatagi Eye Hospital visited Mrs. Ramdhani’s home. The community health worker approached Mrs. Ramdhani and, at first, Mrs. Ramdhani was reluctant to talk to her or answer questions about her vision. The community health worker assured her that she was there to help. Mrs. Ramdhani began opening up about her loss of vision and how it has been declining steadily. She discussed how her poor eyesight made it difficult to accomplish anything and it made her feel depressed. The community health worker identified that she was suffering from cataract in her right eye.

After speaking with Mrs. Ramdhani, the community health worker met with her husband to convince him of the importance of seeking care. Mr. and Mrs. Ramdhani agreed to seek care and went to LAKHNA vision center. Once there, the optometrist diagnosed her with cataract in her right eye. The optometrist assured Mrs. Ramdhani that the recovery was quick and that her vision would be restored so that she could have a better quality of life. Mrs. Ramdhani was brought to Jawaharlal Rohatagi Eye Hospital. A senior doctor examined her eyes, confirmed the diagnosis and set a time for her cataract surgery.

The surgery was successful and Mrs. Ramdhani remains very satisfied with the results. She praises community health workers and the vision center that supported her decision to accept surgery. She encourages others in her village to visit the LAKHNA vision center for eye screenings.

Vivek Awasthi

Asst. Administrator

J L Rohatgi Hospital