Gondar (Ethiopia) Eye Surgery

Figures and statistics

The Government in Ethiopia, and especially the Federal Ministry of Health, acknowledge in their present 5 year plan the support that is needed from charitable sources. The Ethiopian Government figure for their Health Budget has recently been £1 per person per year.

  • Ethiopia has the average number of qualified eye doctors for Sub Saharan Africa (1:1,000,000 population) but 60 are in Addis Ababa and the biggest towns, leaving 15-20 on very low rates of pay to look after the remaining 70 million population.

  • In the North Gondar area one or two qualified eye surgeons have looked after the needs of 4 million people. In the UK this is equal to the population of the whole of Wales plus Bristol and Liverpool, where there are 70 eye surgeons, each with full back up teams.

  • The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommended the minimum figure of eye surgeons in the less developed world is 1:500,000 population.

  • There are 1,250,000 blind people in Ethiopia, half of whom are blind from cataract.

  • In the area round Debark to the north of Gondar, it is estimated there will be 10,000 people waiting for cataract surgery.

  • The WHO recommended population to be served by a (secondary) eye unit is 1.25 to 1.75 million. This is the population of Debark with its 4 nearest Health Centres, Dabat, Adi Arkay, Jana Mora and Deresgie.

  • 80% of blind people can do no economic activity while requiring 10% of the time of a sighted person to look after them.

  • Interventions to cure or prevent blindness are among the cheapest and most cost effective of all health interventions.

  • Ethiopia has been training 4-7 medically qualified eye surgeons per year but a significant number are recruited to work overseas. There are more Ethiopian doctors working in Washington DC than exist in the whole of Ethiopia.

  • The prevalence of blindness and low vision is greatest in the Amhara region of Ethiopia with the exception of the Somali region.

Gondar Ethiopia

Map showing location of Gondar (Gonder) Ethiopia

Click to see Google Earth view


GEES the eye sight charity serving the Gondar region of Ethiopia
Charity facts and statistics for Gondar Ethiopia Eyesight
Child blindness in Ethiopia - Sandy Holt Wilson GEES
Child blindness in Ethiopia - Sandy Holt Wilson GEES