The Ophthalmological Society of Ghana (OSG) has said that there could be a looming decline of eye specialists in the country.

OSG is made up of eye specialists in Paediatric Ophthalmology, Community eye health and Cornea and Anterior segments.

According to Citi news,  the National President of the OSG, Dr Michael Ekouba Gyasi said more than half of the 90 ophthalmologists in the country were billed for retirement in the next 10 years.

Describing the situation as a national challenge, Dr. Gyasi said currently there were 20 eye specialists residents in training, but the number has to double if the country can achieve a sustainable growth.

He was addressing the opening session of the 28th Annual and Scientific Meeting of the OSG underway in Sunyani.

The two-day meeting which was on the theme, “Universal Eye Health: A Global Action Plan, observed the need to train more eye care professionals and also ensure that trainees get adequate hands-on skills training, according to Dr Gyasi.

“If nothing at all, their cataract surgical skills, including phacoemulsification, must be spot on,” he said.

Dr. Boateng Wiafe, a renowned eye specialist, said research shows that 56 per cent of all visually-impaired cases in the country were due to cataract.

He said there is the need for government to improve access to comprehensive eye care services and integrate the services into general health systems.

Dr. Wiafe said high cost of service remained a key challenge in accessing eye care, and called for the inclusion of eye care services in the National Health Insurance Scheme.