Dr. Celiz from Peru screens a little girl's sight for eye disease retinopathy of prematurity

Protecting the vision of newborns in Peru

Babies born prematurely are at risk for a sight-stealing condition called retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), which can cause life-long blindness if not treated by skilled eye teams within weeks, or sometimes even days, of birth.

Protecting the Sight of Babies

When a child is born early, the blood vessels at the back of their eyes can grow abnormally and permanently damage their retinas – putting babies at risk of losing their sight.

At Orbis, we believe that no child should start their life with impaired vision from an avoidable cause. And with the right awareness, knowledge, and equipment, ROP is entirely preventable.

ROP is particularly prevalent in Latin America and Southeast Asia, but few hospitals there have the training and resources needed to deliver the highly time-sensitive care to babies in need. That’s why Orbis’s efforts in these regions focus heavily on training doctors and nurses to screen and treat newborns and help to provide the necessary resources to save the sight of our tiniest patients.

A baby sleeps in an incubator at a hospital neonatal unit in Dangang, Vietnam

Premature babies are at risk of retinopathy of prematurity, which can cause permanent blindness – but you can help save their sight!

Genesis Can Grow up With Sight

When little Genesis was born 15 weeks early in a hospital near her home in Trujillo, Peru, her situation was dire. The newborn weighed only slightly more than a pound and needed constant medical care. She was also at risk of going blind just as her life was beginning.

Genesis’s mother, Lizbeth, was worried her daughter might not survive and recalled: “They took her to [intensive care] with a ventilator and respirator. The pediatric doctors never gave me any hope. They told me that the baby was very little and that she wasn’t going to make it.

But Genesis showed a remarkable will to live. However, more troubling news came after doctors examined Genesis’s eyes. They told her mother that her child was likely to go blind.

Genesis – like all babies born prematurely – was at risk of the eye disease retinopathy of prematurity (ROP).

But the good news is that with the right training and equipment, ROP can be prevented. And, thankfully, Orbis-trained doctors at the Trujillo Regional Hospital – one of our partner hospitals in Peru – were there to intervene and provide Genesis with the sight-saving care she needed.

After several ROP treatments over the course of her time at the hospital, Genesis’s precious sight was preserved!

Close the modal
Sorry there was an error.
Try again