Dr Tope Akinbinu’s study that investigated health promotion tools to reduce the progression of myopia (nearsightedness) earned him a PhD in Optometry.
‘I am elated and am looking forward to imparting the knowledge gained from the programme to younger optometrists,’ he said.
His study found that health promotion or educational interventions to reduce myopia progression had a positive impact on the attitudes and practices of Nigerian schoolchildren.
He believes that the findings will reduce the potential of children developing severe myopia and blindness due to Glaucoma, retinal detachment and other eye diseases, with various economic and health benefits.
Akinbinu said his main challenge was seeking consent and gaining approval from school administrators and parents for children to participate in the study as it made use of invasive techniques.
He expressed his thanks to his supervisors, Professors Kovin Naidoo and Samuel Wajuihian for their support, and the South African government for funding his postgraduate degree.
Words: Mandisa Shozi