Local eye doctor to assist in West Africa over Thanksgiving

A local ophthalmologist is going somewhere late next week, but it’s not to Grandma’s house to eat a lot of turkey and watch football. Dr Brian Monson of the Logan Eye Institute will be travelling to the West African country of Mali as part of a humanitarian effort and help alleviate some of the dire medical conditions seen in that part of the world.

“We’re very excited to go over. I’m heading with a small group of 17 Utah volunteers as well as three other surgeons also from Utah to the Republic of Mali to go take part in a surgical campaign focused on helping the blind receive functional vision and get their sight back. It’s going to be a really good experience,” Dr. Monson said.

In Mali, the ratio is about one doctor to around 17,000 people and there is a high incidence of eye conditions – higher than most regions in the world.

“That’s really a lot of why we picked Mali and why we’re doing this type of work. There is a huge need and without access to health care like we (have) in the United States, in developed countries the prevalence is much higher.

“The diseases that they face it’s not just blinding conditions that we see in the United States that affect the elderly but these are also conditions because of malnutrition, because of disease, because of sanitation that affect even the very young.”

On KVNU’s For the People program on Tuesday, Dr. Monson said the blind in developing countries, like Mali, are particularly vulnerable. With the young it can affect whether they marry, get a job, get an education or not. You can get more information about the upcoming humanitarian trip on the <a href=”https://www.facebook.com/loganeyeinstitute/?hc_ref=ARQ814HsBCY-ynosUqr0GvAVZCXOZqeZhhz0JDdUGq1TT8K03JWL-EPyq9iwBfzfPXw” target=”_blank”>Logan Eye Institute Facebook</a> page.

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