Connecting Pinoy Eye MDs' Views and News, On-Line, On-Time     Volume 3 Number 1 March 2012
Alay Sa Seniors 2012
By Anna Francesca B. Bayrante, MD

Wisdom comes with age.

So it is said. And so it was made true when, on February 18, 2012, the DOH Eye Center-Department of Ophthalmology once again hosted a widely-attended annual "Alay sa Senior Citizens" event, with the help of the residents, consultants, and staff, in cooperation with the different service departments of the East Avenue Medical Center.

In previous years, the Eye Center has been in partnership with the Departments of Medicine, Orthopedics, Otorhinolaryngology (ORL), and Dermatology. This year, the Departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology (OB-GYN), Urology, and Dental Service were invited and have joined the medico-surgical staff, giving free physical examination services and delivering lectures on common ailments troubling our senior citizens. There were also Information Dissemination and Public Health Awareness lectures given by knowledgeable resource people from the Department of Ophthalmology, Resources for The Blind Foundation, The Eye Bank of Manila, and PhilHealth.

The Alay Sa Senior Citizens has been an integral part of the Eye Center's yearly schedule of activities, as well as an opportunity to deliver world-class eye care to indigent patients, most especially the elderly, which began as a Valentine's Day offering, as suggested by Dr. Gloria Lim, on February 14, 2000.

Free services included Hypertension and Diabetes screening (Medicine-Endocrinology), Bone Scan (Orthopedics), Otoscopy (ORL), skin examination (Dermatology), Pap smear (OB-GYN), urological examination/prostate exam/DRE (Urology), and dental check-up (Dental Service). Where the department of Ophthalmology was concerned, cataract screening was offered. Free medications for Dry Eye Syndrome were also made available for diagnosed patients.

Free snacks and bottomless beverages were readily available for the comfort of our elderly clients.

The event, which lasted from 7:00 AM and ended at 12:00 NN, was attended by 725 male and female senior citizens. Fifty-seven percent (57%) underwent Cataract Screening, 64% were screened for diabetes and other medical problems, 34% were examined by the ORL Service, 15% had Pap smears done, 13% had their bone scan done, 12% were examined by both Dermatology and Urology, and 11% were seen by the Dental Service. Because of the addition of more free service consultations, the OPD Clinics and the DOH Eye Center were utilized to de-congest the Main Hospital Lobby.

All things considered, the Alay sa Senior Citizens 2012 was a success, achieving the DOH Eye Center's mission and vision to provide multiple areas of expertise in ophthalmic health care as a center of wellness, encouraging people participation and self-reliance in health care, in keeping with our mandate of serving our fellowmen, regardless of their age or status in life.

Enriched by four years of experience, the DOH Eye Center-Department of Ophthalmology now looks forward to succeeding years of providing world-class service to our countrymen.

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