Briefing on NGO Coordination with NHFPC(No.8)


September 2013


1.2012 NGO-NHFPC Coordination Meeting was held in Shenyang from July 11 to 12

2.The 66th World Health Assembly (WHA) endorsed a resolution “Towards universal eye health: a global action plan 2014-2019” in Geneva, Swiss, 22 May 2013

3.WHO Western Pacific Member States draft a regional plan for eye health

4.Restructure of relevant agencies of the National Health and Family Planning Commission (NHFPC)

5.Reports from 2013 National Eye Day

6.A Provincial Conference for the Prevention and Treatment of Blindness was held in Hunan Province

7.Update of “Seeing is Believing” Innovation Funds

8.The Fred Hollow Foundation officially opened its Beijing Office

9.World Sight Day

10.Meetings and workshops 2


1. 2013NGO-NHFPC Coordination Meeting was held in Shenyang from July 11 to 12

The meeting was organized by the Bureau of Medical Administration and Supervision of NHFPC and IAPB China Secretariat, and sponsored by He Eye Care System. There were more than 60 participants from PBL NGOs working in China and IAPB member organizations, officials from the Bureau of Medical Administration and Supervision, NHFPC, the Institute of Hospital Administration of NHFPC, National Guiding Group for Blindness Prevention, IAPB, private hospitals, Standard Chartered Bank, as well as local provincial and municipal health bureaus and other related government agencies.

The Coordination Meeting commenced in 2005 and has been held annually for nine times. The meeting provided a platform for interactions and communications among eye health NGOs and between NGOs and government agencies. The 2013 meeting has the most participants, is the most representational, and the best-arranged one.


2. The 66th World Health Assembly (WHA) endorsed a resolution “Towards universal eye health: a global action plan 2014-2019”

After seven days of intense discussions, the 66th World Health Assembly (WHA) concluded with agreement on a range of new public health measures and recommendations aimed at securing greater health benefits for all people, everywhere. In the resolution “Towards universal eye health: a global action plan 2014-2019” delegates endorsed an action plan that aims to further improve eye health, reduce avoidable blindness and visual impairment, and secure access to rehabilitation services. The global target is to reduce the prevalence of avoidable blindness and visual impairment by 25% by 2019 from the baseline of 2010.


3. WHO Western Pacific Member States draft a regional plan for eye health

The World Health Organization (WHO) hosted a regional consultation to develop a Regional Action Plan (RAP) on Blindness and Visual Impairment for the Western Pacific Region. Held in Manila in early May, the three-day meeting determined regional priorities for efforts to prevent avoidable blindness, and was the first meeting of its kind for the Region.

Representatives from the governments of Japan, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Mongolia, the Philippines, Australia, the Solomon Islands, Samoa, Vanuatu, Cambodia, China, Lao PDR, the Federated States of Micronesia and Vietnam came to Manila for the consultation. Observers and technical advisers from IAPB Western Pacific Region, CBM, Peking Union Medical Hospital, the Fred Hollows Foundation, Pacific Eye Institute and Vision 2020 Australia also contributed to discussions.

Professor Zhao Jialiang from Peking Union Medical College Hospital and Ms. Zhang Rui from the Bureau of Medical Administration and Supervision of NHFPC participated in the meeting. Many participants now see the RAP and global plan as ?road maps? for national action to prevent avoidable blindness and will be important for advocacy and aligning work of health ministries, WHO and NGOs in the future.

The RAP will be presented at WHO?s Western Pacific Regional Committee Meeting in October. To view a copy of the draft RAP or find out more, please contact IAPB Western Pacific.


4. Restructure of relevant agencies of the National Health and Family Planning Commission (NHFPC)

Since the MoH has changed to the “National Health and Family Planning Commission” (NHFPC), there are some restructures within NHFPC. The MoH's two departments, Medical Administration and Medical Service Supervision, have been merged into one bureau called Bureau of Medical Administration and Supervision”. Mr. Zhao Minggang, Deputy Director-General of the Department of Medical Administration who was formerly in charge of prevention of blindness at the level of department, was replaced by Mr. Zhou Jun, Deputy Director-General of the new Bureau of Medical Administration and Supervision. The Division of General Affaires which is responsible for preventing blindness remains unchanged and is now under the new Bureau. Ms. Fan Jing, former Director of the Division, has been replaced by Ms. Hu Xiang. The other significant new change is that the Division of General Affaires has designated Ms. Zhang Rui as a single person responsible for the prevention of blindness within the Division.


5. Reports from 2013 National Eye Day

China celebrated its 18th National Eye Day on 6 June 2013. The theme this year was “Bring together our dream, eliminating blinding trachoma by 2016”. The theme reflects the MoH?s current key program in preventing avoidable blindness and visual impairment.

Recognizing the gravity of blindness in the country and the importance of raising public awareness on eye health issues, the Chinese Ministry of Health, together with 12 other Ministries, officially declared 6 June as “National Eye Day” in 1996. Since then China has celebrated its National Eye Day on 6 June consecutively for 18 years.

Each year in May, the MoH issues a notice to all provinces with a particular theme for the National Eye Day. Hospitals conduct free eye checks for the public; schools hold educational activities on eye health for students, and communities organize free lectures on prevention and treatment of eye diseases for residents.


6. A Provincial Conference for the Prevention and Treatment of Blindness was held in Hunan Province

Supported by CBM, the Hunan Provincial Office for Prevention of Blindness held a conference in Changsha, 15-16 May 2013, to develop a PBL plan for the province for the next 5 year.

Participants included Dr. Leshan Tan from the IAPB China Secretariat, Ms. Yinghong Cai and Ms. Ying Xia from CBM, Ms. Yanping Yu from the Department of Medical Administration, Hunan Provincial Health Bureau, staffs of Hunan Provincial Office for Prevention of Blindness, and representatives of health bureaus and offices for prevention of blindness from 14 prefectures. Dr. Tan introduced IAPB and VISION 2020, as well as issues of avoidable blindness in China. Ms. Cai introduced CBM experiences in building local capacity at prefecture level in Mianyang Prefecture, Sichuan Province. Representatives from the prefecture cities of Binzhou, Shaoyang, and Zhangjiajie introduced their respective experiences and achievements since 2003 in building local capacity at prefecture level. Participants were also divided into groups for discussion of a draft provincial PBL plan to be implemented in the next 5 years.


7. Update of “Seeing is Believing” Innovation Funds

Seeing is Believing Innovation Fund received 310 applications globallyof which, 12 submissions from China (5 in Chinese and 7 in English).


8. The Fred Hollow Foundation’s Beijing Office was officially opened

An opening ceremony of The Fred Hollows Foundation?s Beijing office was held on 27th August, 2013. Representatives who play key roles in advocating blindness prevention attended this event to call for joint efforts in China to increase commitments to elimination of avoidable blindness in this country, including Australian ambassador, officials from Chinese National Health and Family Planning Commission and China Disabled Persons? Federation, leaders of hospitals and Non-government organizations.

Since 1998 when the first cataract surgical training project rolled out in Taihe County, Jiangxi Province, The Foundation has marched its way of ending avoidable blindness in rural China to the capital of the country, by opening a new office in Beijing. Purpose of the Beijing Office will be building collaborative connection between The Foundation and the national government as well as key stakeholders, in order to mobilize governmental resources and enhance social engagement in larger scale of eye health development. This is part of the strategy that FHF China program is currently taking on, as China is becoming more confident in its economy and social progress, and searching for effective approaches in social development with government commitment and foreign aids.

This strategic step of The Foundation was considered as a turning point of its China program and appreciated by Ms. Francis Adamson, the Australian Ambassador to the People?s Republic of China. She remarked that The Foundation is worthy its notable fame of the greatest charitable organization in Australia with its remarkable work that has been done in the last 15 years in China, which definitely contributed to the bilateral ties between Australia and China.

Ms. Zhang Rui, representative from the Division of General Affairs, Bureau of Medical Administration and Supervision, NHFPC (formerly MoH), congratulated The Foundation on its new Beijing Office. She said Chinese government has considered the development of eye health system as one of the basic conditions to people?s right to eye health, and the government takes its responsibility in achieving this goal. She also commented that the NHFPC shares the common goal of eliminating avoidable blindness by 2020 and providing high quality eye care services in rural areas alongside with The Foundation, and therefore NHFPC looks forward to collaborating with the FHF Beijing Office.

Mr. Brian Doolan, CEO of The Foundation, thanked all guests for their support of the FHF Beijing Office. He said, when he delivered a speech some years ago, the total number of blindness in the world is 45 million, but recently the number decreased to 32.4 million according to the new release of WHO. He believes that ending avoidable blindness is achievable. And The Foundation will never stop seeking to reach this goal.

For more information about the Fred Hollows Foundation China program and its Beijing office, please visit the newly launched WWW.HOLLOWS.ORG.CN.


9. World Sight Day 2013

World Sight Day 2013 (WSD13) this year falls on 10 October 2013 (the second Thursday of October). After two years with no theme for World Sight Day, 2013 is going to have a global theme again. This year's theme is "Universal Eye Health". The theme ties in with the WHO Action Plan that has been adopted by the World Health Assembly in May 2013. The key focus of the action plan is to promote universal eye health coverage and reduce levels of avoidable blindness.

The Action Plan identifies its purpose as to ?increasing access to comprehensive eye care services that are integrated into health systems?. The theme for World Sight Day 2013 comes from this focus. ?Universal Eye Health? embodies many critical aspects of successful eye health uptake, and so IAPB believes that we should use a rolling theme – so ?Universal Eye Health? will remain the theme for the next couple of years.

Each year, IAPB will focus on one aspect of the theme to develop a “Call to Action”. For 2013, the call to action is: “Get Your Eyes Tested.” The call to action recognises a vital aspect of a successful and sustainable eye health network – an informed and regular end-user base which accesses eye care services at different points, based on need, age and other such factors. Indeed, key decision makers, policymakers, government officials and other important stakeholders are all individuals who will need to access eye care services, so ?Get Your Eyes Tested? is a powerful and simple call to action that should resonate with a variety of audiences.

An eye test is first point of contact and the first step for diagnosis and treatment for practically every eye condition. So urging end-users to get their eyes tested should be a powerful call to action that can be incorporated into a variety of focal areas; be it refractive errors, diabetic retinopathy, cataract and so on.

Like every year, IAPB will be producing an exciting pack of promotional material that can be used as part of your WSD campaign. This year too, IAPB will be producing posters, ribbons, balloons and an implementation pack in colourful and interesting designs. Please write to if you wish to receive a promotional material pack.


10. Meetings and Workshops

The IAPB's 2013 Council of Members meetings will take place over 14-17 September at the Hilton Metropole and The Grand, Brighton (UK). The meetings will run alongside the Neglected Tropical Diseases NGDO Network meetings hosted by Sightsavers. This year's programme offers a variety of opportunities for members to learn, network and share with each other.

This year's Council of members meeting is set to become a platform for recognising emerging leaders in eye health, with member organisations invited to nominate extraordinary individuals to be celebrated as the next generation of Eye Health Leaders. Congratulations to Ms. Zhao Ming of He Eye Care System! Among the 20 Eye Health Leaders, Ms. Zhao is the only one from China.

The 18th Congress of Chinese Ophthalmological Society will be held on 13-17 September 2013 at Xiamen International Convention and Exhibition Centre, Xiamen, Fujian Province.

2013 National Blindness Prevention Management Training Workshop will be held in Chengdu, 17-18 October. The workshop is sponsored by the Bureau of Medical Administration and Supervision of NHFPC, organized by the IAPB China Secretariat and The Fred Hollows Foundation, and logistically supported by Chengdu Bright Eye Hospital. Over 100 government officials from provincial health bureaus and PBL offices across China will participate in the two-day training workshop.

WHO Western Pacific Regional Committee Meeting will be held in Manila The Philippines, 21-25 October. The draft Regional Action Plan (RAP) on Blindness and Visual Impairment for the Western Pacific Region will be reviewed at the meeting.

The 9th International Symposium of Ophthalmology (ISO) will be held in Guangzhou, China, on November 9 – 11, 2013. Hosted by the Zhongshan Ophthalmic Centre (ZOC) and the State Key Laboratory of Ophthalmology (SKLO) of the Sun Yat-sen University (SYSU), the 9th ISO will be held in conjunction with the 30thanniversary of the ZOC.