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Cataract surgeries in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico

Project Background and Description

Cataracts in are a major health issue in Mexico, which suffers from high diabetes population rates. Wait times for treatments in public hospitals are very long and low income people have no access to expensive timely treatments. As they wait, they lose productivity, income. This impacts negatively not only them but their family that needs to attend to the diseased needs. The situation is particularly sensitive in Juarez which suffers insufficient public health resources, including ophthalmology

Ciudad Juarez (“Juarez”) has an estimated population of 1.5 million people and lies south of the Rio Grande, across from El Paso, Texas. El Paso-Juarez is the second largest binational metropolitan area on the Mexico-U.S. border (after San Diego-Tijuana) , with a combined population of over 2.7 million people. While Juarez has historically suffered from a world-high crime rate (drug cartels wars, poverty and corruption), violence has started to decline in a concerted effort of government and local population.
a local NGO USMC Strategic Alliance (“USMC”) and Pro Bono Doctors have partnered with Dr. Amescua, a leading Miami-based anterior ocular specialist and assist a local ophthalmic clinic, ConVision 2000, in providing free or heavily subsidized cataracts to disadvantaged residents in need of the procedure. Our support includes direct financial support on a per procedure basis. In addition, we provide local accommodations for medical students assisting on an unpaid basis in partnership with Tec Monterrey, the leading medical teaching institution in Northern Mexico. Dr. Amescua does not charge for the procedures and is actively training the medical staff to state-of-the-art standards: the Bascom Palmer Eye institute, where Dr. Amescua operates on a regular basis, is ranked the #1 eye hospital in the country as published in U.S. News & News & World Report’s Best Hospitals issue.

We have chosen to assist cataract procedures in Juarez because:
– they are life-changing, restoring vision and allowing patients and their family a return to normal life
– Juarez residents have no access to such procedures without ConVision.

Our plans for the Juarez program is together with USMC to facilitate up to 1000 cataracts a year and to expand into retinal diseases. We also hope to establish a permanent surgical staff at ConVision.

Project Principal Activities

Treatment of cataract under the supervision of Dr. Amescua, a leading Miami-based cataract and corneal transplant expert

Project Key Statistics

A cataract procedure costs approximately $1,000 in Juarez and ConVision has contracted to operate cataract at the discounted cost of $500 which covers the procedure’s marginal costs. ConVision is not charging for overhead, nurses and other aspects of the procedure.

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Project Contact Info

Cecilia Levine + email + phone
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