Our colleague Subhash Suthar, and his contribution to the sight loss community, was recognised on 9 October 2019 when he became the first recipient of the new David Burt OBE Award 2019 at the Vision UK awards.
The David Burt OBE award is given to an individual or team working within the vision, eye health and sight loss community who can demonstrate a project, in research or improved methodology and practise in assisting in the cause of reducing sight loss in the community, that has made a significant improvement in the sector.
Hosted at the Royal Society of Medicine (RSM), Subhash was presented with a striking bespoke sculpture crafted specially to mark the occasion by David Burt OBE.
The award was given in recognition to Subhash’s work with the International Glaucoma Association (IGA) to reach and provide services to BME communities to assist in reducing sight loss.
Muslims in the UK who are affected by glaucoma or suspected intra-ocular pressures may stop using their eye drops during the holy month of Ramadan when fasting. Subhash identified this potential risk to the eye health of this community and played an integral role in driving the IGA to develop a campaign to raise awareness and give information to those who might be affected.
The campaign engaged the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB), ophthalmologists and a large portion of the population to deliver a clear message that Muslims could continue taking eye drops either side of fasting each day and could also learn to instil them whilst practicing punctal occlusion, thus keeping the drops within the eye.
This project is just one of many that comprise Subhash’s extraordinary contributions towards discouraging preventable glaucoma sight loss in his role at the IGA, for which we are delighted he has been recognised.