Besides the facility of free surgery, cataract patients would now also get free spectacles after surgery at the hospitals which have signed an agreement with the health department under National Programme for Control of Blindness.
Confirming this, Dr Manjit Singh, senior medical officer, eye mobile unit at Lord Mahavira Civil Hospital, Ludhiana, said the state government had signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with some city hospitals for conducting free surgeries of patients suffering from cataract.
"Earlier, the government used to pay Rs 750 per case, but now it will pay Rs 1,000, which would help the empanelled hospitals provide free spectacles to the patients," he added.
Stating that these hospitals don't charge any fee for cataract surgery and spectacles from needy patients, Dr Singh said the needy patients could also contact them for more information about free cataract surgery.
According to the health and family welfare department, around 80,000 cataract surgeries have been performed in the state between April and September 2013 under the National Programme for Control of Blindness.
Dr Singh further said there aim was to bring down the blindness level by conducting free surgeries of cataract patients.
Dr Brijinder Singh, ophthalmologist at Rana Eye Hospital, said cataract generally occurred in elderly persons, but it could occur early in diabetic patients. In some patients, cataract could also occur due to an injury in eye, he added.
"It is a normal process as cataract occurs in almost all elderly people. However, if it is left untreated, a person can suffer from blindness. So timely treatment is necessary," he added.
"The main symptoms of cataract are decreased night vision, blur vision, dimming and fading of colours. Some patients complain about double vision in effected eye," he added.
Contact these for free surgery
Ramesh Eye Hospital
Sankara Eye Hospital