Nepal Emerges as a Hub for Eye Treatment in South Asia, Attracting 800,000 Foreign Patients in 2023

Nepal is quickly becoming a major destination for eye care tourism. This development is largely driven by the Nepal Netra Jyoti Sangh (NNJS), a leading NGO dedicated to providing eye care services throughout the country.

NNJS has built a vast network of eye care facilities, with 27 Eye Hospitals and 154 Primary Eye Care Centers spread across Nepal. This extensive network has led to a significant increase in the number of eye examinations and treatments performed. In just one year, NNJS facilities facilitated over 3.3 million eye examinations and treatments, with a remarkable 800,000 of those treatments going to foreign patients.

Making quality eye care accessible is a core principle for NNJS. They prioritize providing care to low-income communities. In 2023 alone, over 265,000 surgeries were performed on individuals who couldn’t otherwise afford them.

Photo courtesy: Nepal Netra Jyoti Sangh (NNJS) Facebook page

Nepal’s expertise in eye care has also grown tremendously. Just 45 years ago, there were only five ophthalmologists in the entire country. Today, however, there are over 800 practicing ophthalmologists. This growth in expertise, combined with the country’s commitment to affordability, is attracting patients from neighboring countries like India, Bangladesh, and Bhutan.

Technological advancements are further enhancing Nepal’s reputation as a leader in eye care. Surgical procedures that once took a full week can now be completed in just two days. This efficiency, coupled with the high quality and affordability of care, makes Nepal an increasingly attractive option for people seeking eye treatment.