By Franca Ochigbo

The International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) has honoured Dr Princess Ifeoma Ike as one of the recipients of the 2021 Eye Health Heroes Awards.

Dr Princess, who has consistently demonstrated her passion, purpose, and determination to restore sight by helping to improve people’s lives around the world, said as an eight-year practising Optometrist, one of her favourite parts working in this role is that she get to help improve people’s quality of life by improving their vision, and general health.

She spoke during the award presentation in Abuja, stating that something as simple as reading glasses and counselling can make a world of difference in helping a patient with their daily activities. Though sometimes it can be challenging, it is equally satisfying.

Another fulfilling part is that Optometry is a social profession where every patient has a story which is an essential part of understanding the diagnosis and recommending treatment modalities.

Dr Princess is counted among the change-makers, innovators and emerging leaders from across all areas and backgrounds in eye health. Her emergence as an optometrist with global health contributions will benefit millions of lives. She is set to continue growing as a leader by tackling the largest and complex problems in eye care. This is an annual development programme to celebrate the achievements of young people who are moving to shape the world.

Dr Princess Ifeoma Ike, a Public Health Optometrist and a World Economic Forum Global Shaper was one of the three recipients from Nigeria named Eye Health Hero in the Future Leaders’ category by the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB).

Currently, she is the CEO of Princess Vision Eye Clinic Limited Abuja, Awka Eye Clinic Limited, and Awka Eye Foundation situated in Anambra State. It focuses on providing quality, accessible and affordable eye care service that meets the need of every Nigerian irrespective of their social class through public and private sector engagements.

She has worked to ensure that marginalised and high-risk groups have access to eye care. The recipients of the Eye health Hero were recognised in a virtual ceremony and, over the next year, be involved in an exclusive series of events and media opportunities.

Joanna Conlon, Director of Development and Communications IAPB, noted that the commitment and energy of the 2021 Eye Health Heroes will be critical to ensure that by 2030, no one experiences unnecessary sight loss, and that everyone has the support and services to achieve their full potential and that we all understand the importance of caring for our own eye health.

She believes that public recognition and commendation will spur others to become more actively involved in spearheading impactful and transformational health care ventures.

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