Tripura is one of the North-Eastern states of India. The state is characterized by its mountaneous and touch terrains. Agriculture serve as the livelihood for most and over 64% of the population live in rural areas (Source: Census of India, 1991). Reaching out medical care, especially specialist care such as Ophthalmology is one of the major challenges due to both infrastructure and resource limitations. ArguSoft's collaborative platform in Tele-ophthalmology was an ideal solution in such a setting and has proved itself many times in the last several 4 years, since April 2007.
The rate and the number of needless blindness cases has been growing in Tripura during the last several years. The solution, experts knew, was by conducting preliminary eye screening and in time treatments. However the screening centers were located in Agartala, the capital. Individuals, especially women and children found it difficult both physically and economically to travel such long distances, besides having to wait long hours for their turn.
The solution for the government was to take these eye-screening centers to their villages instead of bringing them to the city screening center.
The Government of Tripura setup Vision Centers (VC) in various locations throughout the state equipped with basic ophthalmic equipments and manned by a trained ophthalmic assistant. The Vision Centers were connected to the central hospital though wireless network. An ophthalmologist sitting at the central hospital could attend to a remote patient in the Vision Center using ArguSoft's Communication Platform using Audio and Video. The sessions could be recorded for archive, training and audit purposes.
- Caters to a population of 3,432,000 spread over 40 administrative units in the State of Tripura
- Reduced travel for primary eye screening by over 70% in the first year in western region of Tripura
- Has increased the eye screening ratio for women by over 50% due to easier access of screening services
The solution continues to prove itself to be an ideal vehicle for distance consulting especially in the field of Tele-ophthalmology.
* ArguSoft is the technology partner for this project, which has been implemented by IL&FS, India.
- Easier access to vision care for rural folks
- Early detection prevents unnecessary blindness
- Simple and easy to use software for the doctors and the Ophthalmic Assistants
- Works even on low bandwidth situations
- Highly cost effective
- Feature rich and highly stable
- 99.9% availability achieved during the last 4 years
The Government of India, awarded The National awards for e-Governance 2008-09 under the special sectoral category of 'Health' to the Tripura Vision Centre Tele-Ophthalmology project.