Ben Koenig, VOSH/International’s recent VOSH Corps placement at the National Autonomous University of Nicaragua-Managua (UNAN) is interviewed here by TV channel 15 in Nicaragua. Ben, just working on improving his Spanish speaking skills, did this interview entirely in Spanish.

Click on the link below to hear the Spanish interview.  To our Spanish speaking VOSHers – How’d Ben do?

The “If I can see better, I can learn better” campaign’s purpose is to identify children with refractive error and binocular vision problems that UNAN can help to allow the children to learn better in school. UNAN is working with an organization called EDUCO to provide glasses for the children who need them. The campaign begins in Managua in 2018. Ben is acting as an adviser for VOSH-Nicaragua, and will be one of the supervising doctors for UNAN optometry students during the campaign.

Updated COVID-19 and VOSH Humanitarian Clinics Advice

Due to an unprecedented surge in COVID-19 infections, a new variant that is more contagious, and these being early days in the vaccination distribution, VOSH/International DOES NOT recommend that chapters participate in domestic or international eye and vision clinics at this time.

We reiterate that at a time when the coronavirus continues to spread quickly in many parts of the world and vaccinations are not yet available to local populations, the risk of close contact with patients in a crowded outpatient environment remains high.

If a VOSH Chapter or VOSH volunteer chooses to hold a clinic against our best guidance, this is done at your own risk, by your own decision and should be in line with current local/national government rules.  VOSH/International would like to reiterate that safety for VOSH volunteers and our patients is of utmost importance and central to any decision-making process.

We have published our updated clinic guidelines with best practices to be observed in this new context.  You can download VOSH/International clinic guidelines here

Also please keep checking the following sites with official and most recent updates:

World Health Organisation: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019

US CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/when-to-delay-travel.html

US Government Travel Advise: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/COVID-19-Country-Specific-Information.html

Thank you for your patience in these unprecedented times, hard work and dedication to improving vision and eye health throughout the world.

John Daniel Twelker, OD, PhD, FAAO, FVI

President, VOSH/International

January 2021