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Indonesia and beyond: A doctor's goal to reduce blindness

In Indonesia, hundreds of people with blinding cataracts arrived at two hospitals in Sumatra, where mass eye camps were held earlier in November. Led by Nepalese surgeon Dr. Sanduk Ruit, 1,400 cataracts were removed in eight days, ameliorating cases of severe vision loss and improving the quality of life for many individuals. The Washington Post reported on the story. Ruit developed stitch-free, small-incision cataract surgery that uses cheap intraocular lenses. He has journeyed to destitute areas of the world to offer this simple procedure, with no cost to the patient. As such, even those from the most remote parts of the country made the lengthy trip to Sumatra, where they hoped that the free operation could rescue their eyesight. By traveling to these developing countries such as Indonesia, where the rate of blindness is one of the highest in the world, Ruit hopes not only to help patients in need but also to train local doctors in his surgical technique that communities can adopt at low cost. Cataracts are the leading cause of blindness internationally, where the majority of victims live in poor countries. Through a combination of treatment and instruction, Ruit hopes to reduce blindness on a global scale.*

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