Tilganga Eye Centre recently introduced laser technology for eye operations in Nepal. People with poor eyesight can opt to undergo this surgery and do away with their glasses. While the operation costs around Rs 200,000 to Rs 800,000 in other countries, Tilganga offers the service for only Rs 45,000. Officials at the hospital are hopeful that the affordable fee will help attract patients from foreign countries as well.
Unlike other non-governmental organisations in Nepal which function as fronts for dollar hoarding, Tilganga is not only one of the best eye-care hospitals in Nepal, but it has earned acclaim both at home and abroad. In 2006 Dr Sanduk Ruit of Tilganga was presented the prestigious Ramon Magsaysay Award for taking ophthalmologic services to remote areas of Nepal. Now that the centre has laid the foundation, our government along with other social organisations need to ensure that people who cannot physically visit the hospital still have access to the services.
Private hospitals should also take lessons from Tilganga and stop focusing solely on profit maximisation and become more service orientated. We congratulate Tilganga team for making a great contribution to Nepal's healthcare system and for taking on a pioneering initiative.