University of Cape Town 2017 Consortium Scholars

Hope Mackline

Hope Mackline

Mackline is a Medical Doctor working at the Infectious Diseases Institute Kampala, Uganda. She is actively involved in treatment and follow up of HIV/AIDS patients in an outpatient’s clinic since 2013. She has a Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene of London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. She manages various opportunistic infections that occur in HIV infection and has witnessed the visual disability caused by HIV. Currently, there are no eye care services integrated in HIV care in Uganda, and patients who need to be screened for various eye conditions find it hard to access services. The situation has inspired her to pursue a career in public health community eye health which is a cornerstone in reducing blindness and visual disability. Mackline is eager to take on opportunities to enhance her knowledge and skills to stand up to the task of promoting the programs involving sight for all at all health care levels.

Mackline anticipates that the Master of Public Health will equip her with knowledge and skills to develop a public health approach to eye care services and the control of blindness. Her goal is to work towards elimination of avoidable blindness among vulnerable populations through epidemiological and operational research in eye health, with emphasis on public health strategies in planning and managing eye care programs.

Stephen Maduabuchi

Stephen MaduabuchiDr. Stephen Maduabuchi Samuel is an optometrist who graduated from Abia State University Uturu Nigeria in 2007. He did his internship with Ugad Eye Clinic Aba, Abia State Nigeria, in 2008, and his National Youth Service with State Hospital Asubiaro, Osogbo Osun State in South West Nigeria, in 2009.

Stephen started working with Benue State Hospitals Management Board in 2010 and was posted by the Board to General Hospital Adikpo, a rural area, to establish the Eye Unit. He worked in General Hospital Adikpo as the Head of the Eye Unit and was transferred to General Hospital Oju, another rural area, to establish another Eye Unit in 2016, where he is working to date. He is presently a volunteer lecturer with the Abia State College of Health Technology Aba, Abia State Nigeria, and Tidoo School of Health Technology, Adikpo Benue State Nigeria, where he trains community health extension workers on Community Eye Health. Stephen is a recipient of the Consortium Scholarship for the Masters in Public Health (Community Eye Health) at the University of Cape Town.

Grace Mwangi

Grace MwangiI am a Project Coordinator with over five years’ experience in design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of regional health projects in Sub-Saharan Africa. Over the years, I have been involved in designing, planning, implementing and monitoring numerous eye health initiatives aimed at eliminating preventable blindness in over eight countries in Eastern, Central and Southern Africa (ECSA) region. This includes but is not limited to, a series of projects aimed at improving the quality and quantity of eye care training in Africa under the VISION 2020 Links Programme.

I believe that an MPH (Community Eye Health) will give me the knowledge and skills I need to develop and manage public health interventions aligned to the eye care needs for populations in Africa, by learning how to undertake appropriate clinical and operational research and design evidence-based eye care initiatives for low and middle income countries. At the end of the course, I aspire to apply my skills to contribute towards the VISION 2020 goal of eliminating the main causes of all preventable and treatable blindness as a public health issue by the year 2020.

Abraham Opare

Abraham OpareAbraham is an Optometrist who currently works at the Asokwa Children’s Hospital in Kumasi-Ghana. He is an recipient of the Commonwealth Eye Health Consortium Scholarship to study MSc Public Health (Community Eye Health) at the University of Cape Town in South Africa.

Abraham’s decision to enter into eye care and Optometry for that matter was one that was driven by the painful realization that two people who are very dear to him, each lost an eye during childhood from conditions that could have easily been diagnosed and managed if they had had access to eye care personnel and eye care service for that matter in the rural community where they found themselves at that time; having to deal with a lot of stigmatization due to their predicament.

He therefore had a strong passion to ensure that no child in Ghana goes blind from any avoidable cause of blindness. In an effort to achieve this, Abraham in partnership with a senior colleague started an organization called Primary Health Vision Care Ghana in 2013 which gives young eye care professionals the chance to reach out to individuals especially children in rural and Peri-urban communities to provide them with quality, affordable and socially sustainable eye care services.

With a keen interest in public eye health and prevention of childhood blindness and as the project manager of the school eye screening programme of the organization he co-founded, Abraham has started as a personal initiative a four year project called the ‘Smart with Sight’ project which brings together young eye care professionals in Ghana to reach out to primary and junior high schools children in remote communities to provide them with free eye screening aimed at identifying children with sight-threatening conditions so an early intervention can be made. The project also involve providing support for those with visual conditions which affect their learning abilities and educating children and their teachers on various eye conditions and good eye care practices, making them key educators or ambassadors in increasing public awareness of sight-threatening eye conditions such as glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy etc.

Abraham’s wishes to extend this project to other countries in Africa and believes his acceptance into the Master of Public Health programme would equipped him with the necessary knowledge and skills to achieve this goal.

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine 2016-2017 Consortium Scholars

Agbeleye Demilade Simileoluwa

Agbeleye Demilade SimileoluwaI am Agbeleye Demilade Simileoluwa, a Nigerian resident ophthalmologist. I undertook my undergraduate studies at the prestigious University of Ibadan, practising in both urban and rural settings before proceeding into the residency program. I obtained my membership of the West African College of Surgeons in 2015 and have a passion for the unreached populations.

My desire to study at LSHTM for the MSc Public Health for Eye Care degree stems from a need to improve my research and public health skills in order to increase my sphere of influence and help reduce avoidable blindness in my nation, continent and the world at large.

Many thanks to the Commonwealth Eye Health Consortium and The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust for the unique opportunity to study here.

Egide Gisagara

Egide GisagaraEgide Gisagara is an ophthalmologist from Rwanda, deployed by the Ministry of Health at Province Hospital of Rwamagana. He has closely worked with Vision for a Nation, Fred Hollows Foundation, and One Sight. He has been involved in cataract surgeries and mentoring middle level ophthalmic cadres in nine district hospitals within the eastern province of Rwanda. He has been awarded a scholarship by the Commonwealth Eye Health Consortium to study Masters in Public Health for Eye Care at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. He is honored to be taught by the world’s reknowned ophthalmology specialists. Egide has special interest in clinical work, research and teaching. His mission is to strengthen eye care into Rwandese health system, by promoting primary, secondary and tertiary eye care services in the country.