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Guyana to get first eye hospital; Optique Vision Care hailed for contribution to optometry studies

Co-founders of Optique Vision Care, Mr Dhani Narine and Ms Madonna Narine.

Guyana will by next year have its first specialty hospital whose focus will be on eye care with the aim of tapping into the medical tourism market, Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of Optique Vision Care, Dhani Narine said Friday.

He made the announcement at a 10th anniversary observance, and later told Demerara Waves Online News that more than US$3 million would be invested in the eye care hospital whose phase one construction has begun at 350 New Market Street, Georgetown.

The facility is expected to open in August 2024.

Mr Narine said the hospital would be targeting patients from the Caribbean. “The Speciality Eye Hospital will provide the full suite of eye care surgeries to complement Optique’s existing services and will better serve the needs of the Guyanese populace and the Caribbean region,” he said.

According to the Optique Vision Care, he and his team were motivated to construct the eye hospital because of the need for specialised treatment which would complement what the company is already doing. “There is need for certain types (of surgeries) but more so there is need for a certain standard and quality of surgeries that we do in Guyana and that is what this project will also aim to satisfy,” he said.

Deputy Vice Chancellor of the University of Guyana, Dr Emannuel Cummings addressing the 10th anniversary observance of Optique Vision Care.

For the past three years, Optique Vision Care has been providing data on diabetic retinopathy to the Ministry of Health. “We monitor and measure progression especially for diabetic patients and the electronic health record system that we have allows us to do it also because all the information is captured,” he added.

Co-founded by Mr Narine, an engineer, and his wife, Madonna, who is an optometrist, Optique was launched with the first Store at Helena No. 1, Mahaica, East Coast Demerara, and subsequently, at various stages, Branches were established at Grove, which later moved to Amazonia Mall at Providence), Giftland, East Street and Movietowne.

University of Guyana Deputy Vice Chancellor Dr Emanuel Cummings credited the evolution of Optique Vision Care to the offering of optometry as a programme of study at that tertiary institution. He said since the start 0f the optometry programme in 2013, over 140 optometrists, including Optique co-founder Madonna Narine, have graduated. “After Madonna would have graduated, she created a platform for our candidates. That was very instrumental. Many of them were able to pursue internship and continue to have the opportunity to do practical attachment at Optique and this such an important aspect of university education where a graduate had gone to the university and didn’t turn her back on the university but provided an opportunity for more of the same kind of professionals to graduate,” Dr Cummings said.