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UAE eye care industry sees growth ahead

Eye Care in the United Arab Emirates, a report released by market research company Euromonitor in June, records a moderate increase in sales of eye care.
This increase was a result of office workers spending more time in front of their work terminals. Moreover, consumers in the UAE are known for the high amount of time they spend in front of televisions and personal computers at home, the report states. This adds up to a relatively high incidence of eye strain in the country.
Among its highlights are:
 - The industry is expected to increase in constant value at a compound annual growth rate of 4 per cent over the forecast;
 - Eye care increased in value by 5 per cent during 2012 to Dh5 million; and
 - Standard eye care registered the strongest growth last year, as value sales increase by 6 per cent.

First Emirati ocular oncologist joins select group

Last year, when Dr Khaled Abu Haleeqa took up the posts of Consultant Ophthalmologist, Oculoplastic Surgeon, Neuro-Ophthalmologist and Ocular Oncologist at Al Mafraq Hospital, he became one of only 150 specialists worldwide with the necessary training to treat rare eye cancers. He is also the world’s only Emirati Ocular Oncologist.
Ophthalmic and orbital cancers account for an estimated 1 to 2 per cent of diagnosed cancer cases across the world. Dr Haleeqa says, “Ocular cancer is a relatively unknown disease. The larger problem is that not many doctors are trained to properly diagnose it.”

Dubai royal pays for baby’s surgery in the UK 

Shaikha Manal Bint Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Women’s Establishment, recently stepped in to help a little girl suffering from eye cancer. Ten-month-old Comoron Afra (pictured) was battling a rare tumour that could cause blindness at Al Ain’s Tawam Hospital. She required treatment in London that her father, who works with Sharjah Police, could not afford. When the family appealed for help, Shaikha Manal offered to pay all expenses, which amounted
to Dh200,000.

Online offer on Lasik surgery taken up quickly

Earlier this year, when Dubai-based deals website Cobone announced a special on Lasik surgery, 32 people grabbed the offer. It can cost between Dh3,700 and Dh22,000. The offer, for Dh2,999 per eye, was licensed by the UAE Ministry
of Health.

Foundation raises funds for eye care at art auction

ART4SIGHT raised Dh1.2 million in an auction in April, in support of Noor Dubai Foundation’s global prevention of blindness programmes. Held for the third consecutive year, the auction saw 40 artists donate 47 artworks to support blindness prevention.