When eye care professionals get the quality training they need, patients get the quality eye care they deserve. But for too many people around the world, where they were born determines whether an avoidable condition will take away their sight. Together with your support, we’re transforming lives for the people we treat and train.
Annual Report 2020
When I joined Orbis in September, I was immediately struck by the resilience of our global teams and their can-do attitude in the face of the global pandemic. 2020 was an extraordinary year, but not only did we survive. We thrived.
We knew that urgent eye care needs would not slow down because of the pandemic, so neither could we. Our longstanding culture of innovation meant we were ready to embrace new ways of working – new paradigms – when it mattered most.
This Annual Report shows how Orbis adapted to drive our mission forward through the most challenging of times, thanks to the incredible generosity of our supporters and volunteers.
Even as Orbis made the difficult decision to pause in-person training on the Flying Eye Hospital, our mission stayed in flight. In this report, you’ll read about the launch of virtual Flying Eye Hospital projects, in which nearly 50 of our Volunteer Faculty shared their medical expertise with eye care teams across nine countries.
In our newly remote world, a record-breaking number of eye care professionals turned to Orbis’s telemedicine platform, Cybersight, to stay connected and to continue learning amid lockdowns. We more than doubled the number of eye care professionals on the platform and are now training more people in more countries and regions around the world than ever before.
Our country offices remained undaunted, even as the pandemic threatened hard-won gains in the fight against avoidable blindness. You'll read about our work in Ethiopia, where our team moved swiftly and smartly not to lose ground in our fight against trachoma, the leading infectious cause of blindness. Orbis successfully distributed millions of doses of antibiotics that fight the disease, despite overwhelming obstacles and the need for new COVID-safe protocols.
You'll also learn about the support we have been providing in the world's largest refugee settlement and the surrounding host community, in Cox's Bazaar, Bangladesh, as well as the landmark study we published providing a roadmap for other organizations doing similar work in refugee settings.
Amid the many difficulties we faced, we also took time to celebrate important milestones like the 20th anniversary of our work in India, one of the first countries where Orbis established a local office. Two decades ago, there was only one eye care center for every 100 million children across the country, but now there is one for every 20 million children – thanks to the network of nearly three dozen centers that Orbis has set up.
Every single day, I'm inspired by our teams around the globe, by the way lives are transformed by our mission, and by all of you, who make this work possible. In 2020 especially, you were a lifeline. Thank you for helping us change the way the world sees.
In 2020, the pandemic disrupted everything. Entire health systems had to prioritize fighting BG真人大游, many of our partner hospitals had to make the difficult decision to provide eye care only in emergency cases, and without warning, in-person opportunities for eye care teams to hone their skills dwindled, almost overnight.
We saw right away that BG真人大游 was the newest barrier to eye care and ophthalmic training. But overcoming barriers is what Orbis does. So, the team set to work.
Orbis has been investing in remote learning for years, so we were able to quickly pivot to virtual training in 2020. Our online platform, Cybersight, came sharply into focus and enabled us to train 26,036 eye health professionals in 192 countries and regions – over three times more individuals and nine more countries than the previous year. Cybersight ensured that training and mentoring could continue for eye care teams across the world, including in some of the hardest-to-reach places. In addition, through the launch of our virtual Flying Eye Hospital projects, we helped eye care teams apply their newly learned skills using virtual simulation training. The participants will take what they learned through Cybersight and simulation training to save sight and transform patients' lives.
Your trust and support over the years are the reason why all of these tools exist, and why we have been able to leverage them to adapt during the pandemic. Most importantly, the solutions that have been developed are not just short-term fixes – they will enrich our programs going forward.
There is no way around it: the BG真人大游 pandemic has made the work to end avoidable blindness harder and more urgent. But it has also accelerated the scaling of some of our most impactful solutions and shifted the paradigm for how we will reach as many people as possible going forward.
With your support, we will continue to build on this momentum. Indeed, we must. For too many people, where they were born still determines whether they can see the world – the blackboard in school, their tools on the job or the faces of the people they love. But thanks to you, there is hope in sight for a world without avoidable blindness.
Very truly yours,
Our Global Reach
Over the Past Five Years,
We Achieved the Following
Our volunteers, partners and staff are who keep us running. In a year of unprecedented challenges, we were still able to achieve our mission thanks to this dedicated team. Here are a few of their stories:
Dr. Andrew Choyce - Staff Anesthesiologist, United Kingdom
Dr. Helena Hurairah - Volunteer Faculty, Brunei
Captain Gary Dyson - Chief Orbis Pilot, USA
Dr. Luz Gordillo - Pediatric Ophthalmologist, Peru
Xiao Ying Liu - Orbis Staff Nurse, China
Dr. W. Lee Alward - Volunteer Faculty, USA
Bekelech - Health Worker, Ethiopia
Dr. Suma Ganesh - Head of Pediatric Ophthalmology, India
Dr. Shamsiya Murat - Pediatric Ophthalmologist, Mongolia
Dr. Javed Farooqui - Volunteer Faculty, India
Around the World
Teaching Eye Care Teams: Volunteer Faculty Keep Hope in Sight
At Orbis, we work hard to ensure your gifts are used as effectively as possible. That’s why 92 cents of every dollar we spend goes directly to increasing quality eye care and saving vision in the countries where we work.
HOW WE USE OUR FUNDS
Management and General
Where we work
Clinical Services and Program Technologies
Latin America and the Caribbean
Sources of support
Contributions and Grants