Grenada Cataracts Alleviated by St. George’s University Alumni Eye Project

he SGU Alumni Eye Project has solidified its commitment to the improvement of health care in Grenada and St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Its most recent undertaking, consultation and surgery on cataract patients at the Grenada General Hospital, took place April 10-11.

Dr. Joseph Iuorno and Dr. Bernard Spier, alumni of St. George’s University, arrived in Grenada equipped with medication, supplies and a Phaco machine to perform the operations. Over fifteen cataract patients were examined, nine of whom were selected for surgery. The surgery and all medication, valued at over 35, 000 US dollars, were all provided free of charge. Among the contributors to the project are St. George’s University, Alcon Pharmaceuticals, Allergan Pharmaceuticals, Advanced Medical Optics and Virginia Commonwealth University.

Minister of Health Senator Ann David-Antoine thanked St. George’s University and the medical team on behalf of the Ministry of Health and the Government of Grenada. “The pleasure and the honor is mine to say thank you. We appreciate the work you are doing and your response to the call.” She acknowledged the support of the hospital staff and the strengthening of the relationship between the University and the Ministry, as directly beneficial to the delivery of health care services in the country. Dr. McGuire expressed his thanks for the attention given to eye care, which he notes, is “an often forgotten area of health.”

The Eye Project is the vision of SGU graduate Dr. Orazio Giliberti, who assisted Dr. Robert Fucigna in performing the first corneal transplants in Grenada last year. Through the University, Dr. Gilberti has worked closely with the Ministry of Health, Dr. Elliot McGuire and by extension, the Eye Care Department at the General Hospital.

The program was extended to St. Vincent in February of this year when five Grenadians and one Vincentian received corneal transplants at the Milton Cato General Hospital. The recent mission again included a stop in St. Vincent where the team met patients and performed additional surgeries.

Published on 04/24/2006