On the plane, where I was planning to relax, I quickly learned that this was not going to be the vacation I had planned it to be. Dr. Ohanesian came over to my seat, showed me some statistics about eye disease in Armenia, briefly went over the goals of the AECP, and then asked me to come up with a curriculum to train doctors…I was confused, he was amused. He then gave me the patented “eyebrow” and walked to his seat, while I, completely lost, took the pen and pad he handed me and started to jot down ideas regarding a training curriculum. The advantage, of course, was that this did make the trip seem short.
Diabetic retinopathy occurs when diabetes damages the tiny blood vessels inside the retina, the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye. A healthy retina is necessary for good vision. If you have diabetic retinopathy you may not notice any changes in your vision initially. However, over time, diabetic retinopathy can become worse and cause vision loss. Diabetic retinopathy usually affects both eyes.
“The most valuable experience of my AECP internship was the general seeing, learning, and doing of the project’s objectives. The statistics compiled in the surveys came to life in Goris, where I sat in on meetings with the Ministers of Health, and edited grant proposals. I learned that change requires action, and action calls for dedication.”
In a country characterized by a high degree of ethnic homogeneity, there are an estimated 3 million people living in Armenia. Armenians constitute more than 95 percent of the republic’s population, with Yezidis comprising the largest minority and few Russian, Ukrainians, Georgians, Greek, Assyrians remaining.