The Rangarajan Vision and Health Foundation
This registered not for profit organization (public charitable trust) has been founded by Dr Ashok Rangarajan, an ophthalmic surgeon with 25 years of experience in ophthalmology.
Dr.Ashok Rangarajan’s community ophthalmic career began from 1993 when he would attend eye camps and help conduct high volume surgeries as a part of the NPCB unit based in the department of Ophthalmology of Pt JNM Medical College, Raipur, currently the capital of the state of Chattisgarh. Subsequently he worked as a Senior Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon in one of the premier eye institutes of the country, Sankara Nethralaya, Chennai for over a decade, where he helped develop the Jaslok Community Ophthalmic Centre(JCOC), the community ophthalmology wing of the institute and was incharge of the department from 1997-2001.
He then represented the organisation on the board of Vision 2020 - the right to sight - India, a national forum formed to achieve the targets set for reducing preventable blindness. He was Director of Eye Care of the Tulsi Chanrai Foundation in Nigeria, a charitable organisation, which runs 5 eye hospitals in Nigeria in partnership with the Government in different regions of the country.
He has been a high volume surgeon himself and has been deeply involved with all aspects of the community ophthalmic service.
With this background Dr Ashok Rangarajan has formed the trust, which is registered as a public charitable trust as per norms laid down by the Govt. of India and has been formed with the aim to serve the people of this region (South Chennai and neighbouring Tamil Nadu) with a single standard of care. The Foundation shares the same facility, Mission and Vision, medical team and staff as the Centre For Eye and Health Care, which in itself shows the same standards for the “haves and have-nots” Compassion, Personalized Care, Ethical and Evidence based practice of medicine are the key strengths and beliefs of the team at the Foundation.
The primary aim is to bring a single standard of care to all the sections of society.
The Foundation has currently obtained the Tamil Nadu Government’s permission to deliv- er eye care free of cost at the Govt Corporation hospitals in Thoraipakkam(OMR, South Chennai) and Kannagi Nagar(South Chennai). While the screening is done at the Govt hospitals, all patients needing follow up investigations and treatment are carried out free of cost at the base hospital located in Thoraipakkam in OMR, South Chennai. The Foundation has been conducting camps in urban slums and rural Tamil Nadu.
In the past 2 decades or more, camp system of screening and bringing the patients to the base hospital and treating them was the norm, but with time it was realised that there were lacunae in the system, and to have a better reach, establishing vision centres and through them being in constant touch with the populace is now being seen as the best way forward. This concept is being further reenforced by the fact that social distancing is the new normal and the vision centre approach would serve all purposes.
The Rangarajan Vision and Health Foundation is currently functioning in Thoraipakkam in South Chennai.
- To provide the most up-to-date eye care to patients in a very caring and friendly environment.
- To preserve and restore vision, respecting the unique needs of each individual patient and offering the best services to satisfy every patient’s needs.
- To lay emphasis on imparting education to our patients and our community regarding preventive measures and create awareness about eye diseases.
- To provide the highest standard of eye care to every individual
The Centre has a well equipped operation theatre complex matching NABH standards, 3 consultation rooms, rooms for other investigations, laboratory and 10 ambulatory beds. There are lifts for patient and staff movement.There is an in house pharmacy and optical dispensing service and dedicated housekeeping services.Trustees
- Dr Ashok Rangarajan, MS;DNB;FRCS;FMRF
- Dr. Manas Gorey, DNB(Ophthalmology)
- Dr PR Balamurugan, MS;FRCS
- Dr. Sridhar Baratan, MS
- Dr. Meenakshi Pandey, MBBS;DO
- Dr. Manikandan P.J, MBBS, MRCSEd, MRCGP(UK)
- Dr. Durga Damodaran, MBBS, MRCGP, Dip Diabetes(UK)
- Dr. Rozzaly Rout, MBBS, DNB(Anaesthesia)
- Receptionist/Patient Counsellor/Enquiry/Insurance Desk - 3
- Optometrists - 3 + 1 Optometry intern
- Optical Services - 2
- Nurse - 1 (Surgical and ward work)
- Phlebotomist- 1
- OT assistant - 1
Modern Equipment for Comprehensive Eye Care
All patients undergo comprehensive eye examination with modern equipments
Health education and information in a community / Primary Health Screening /School teacher counselling /Eye screening
Primary Health / Eye Screening/ Tele-ophthalmology services in high volume screening
Outreach activities have been limited to vision and health screening camps within a 5 kms radius in collaboration with Govt Corporation hospital / Banks such as Equitas / local clubs / Rotary Club of Madras Coromandel. Many have been done under the name of Centre for Eye and Health Care, the private limited arm of the eye hospital.
Camps have had 2 essential features - screening and education of preventive measures. Preventive health care education has been done by distribution of educational pamphlets, in local language and holding group discussions in schools and local community centres and local radio stations. In schools, lectures to students and group discussions with teachers have been conducted with the aim to identify vision issues and help the stu- dents comply with eye care given.
Screening has been aimed at two groups - the above 50 and the school going children.
The Foundation strongly believes that primary health care and eye care go hand in
hand so most camps have been designed in this manner.
Camps have mostly been Primary Health and Vision camps where Haemoglobin, Blood sugar, Blood pressure, Weight/Height, Physician evaluation and Eye evaluation by optometrist have been performed.
Eye evaluation has included vision testing and imaging of the eye by FORUS non-mydriatic camera.The images are teleported to the base hospital where an ophthalmologist reviews the images and reports with advice for further follow up wherever indicated.Those needing further care have been seen free at the base hospital by senior ophthalmologists. Further investigations such as OCT for diabetic retinopathy, Visual fields for glaucoma have been done free and surgeries have been done free or at a very low cost. Laser treatment for Glaucoma or Retinal conditions have also been done in a similar manner.
School camps have aimed at determining refractive errors and patients requiring further care were examined at the base hospital. The second belief of the Foundation is to keep the continuity of care with the community where screening is performed rather doing it as a one time event.
This ensures that tangible benefits are achieved and increases the confidence of the community with the service provider.
Around 2200 persons have been screened from June 2019.More than 50 free or low pay- ing surgeries have been performed. Spectacles have been distributed free/at minimum cost to school children and some sections of the community.
With social distancing norms we look forward to vision centres to be our link with the community and achieve holistic health for all.
The Foundation is hoping to be a partnering organisation of the prestigious Project Orange conceived and initiated by Rotary District 3232 with support from Rotary Foundation. The Project involves setting up of a cluster of vision centres in urban slums of Chennai and rural Tamil Nadu. 1 cluster would include 8 Vision Centres. The staff will be increased proportionately in number as the project begins, the current strength can cater to the first year projections.
Equipment for pre-operative assessment for optimal results
The Foundation in its premises runs a high class surgical suite where most ophthalmic
surgeries can be performed. The operating theatre has been designed to meet NABH
standards and has state of the art equipment to perform the most modern and complex
anterior segment surgeries. Patient care of the highest quality and compassion lies at
the core of this Foundation.
The operation theatre has a dedicated AHU and HEPA Filter with 6 monthly air quality surveillance and monthly culture and use of indicators and integrators for optimal sterilization and theatre environment. Main Operating Room with State of the art Equipment including Leica Microscope, Boyle’s apparatus, “Stellaris” phaco machine
The OT complex has an Ambulatory ward, separate changing area for patients and staff, Recovery area, Autoclave/ Sterilization area and Main Operating Room with facility for Local or General Anaesthesia Surgeries with monitoring facilities.
Dr Ashok Rangarajan had been practicing tele ophthalmology for 3 years( 2014-2017 ) with one non-mydriatic (Forus Tri-nethra) imaging unit and trained optometrist being sta- tioned within Sree Renga Hospital in Chengalpattu, where all diabetic patients underwent ophthalmic screening by the optometrist and the images were sent to the base hospital, to be interpreted and the ones needing further care were advised to report to the base hospital. The equipment has since been moved to Chennai and are used for routine camps.