Contextualised Diabetic Retinopathy Training and Screening Package for Low Resource Settings

GCRF Funding Cycle

Principal Investigator
Andrew Blaikie


ODA countries

Sustainable Development Goals
Goal 3

Diabetes is a growing problem in the poorer regions of the world. An important complication is blindness due to damage at the back of the eye. This often affects those of working age. This leads to further economic hardship in countries least able to offer treatment.

Screening for diabetes requires expensive cameras, highly trained staff and reliable internet and electricity supplies. In low income countries it is often impractical to deliver this traditional approach to screening and many people become blind.

We have previously developed an inexpensive, highly portable and solar powered device (Arclight BIO) for looking at the back of the eyes to see signs of disease. We now wish to massively expand screening by equipping and training local eyecare professionals by developing:

  • A new grading system diabetic eye disease
  • Simulation training eyes
  • A teaching mirror and camera for the Arclight BIO
  • A new lens to magnify the view of the back of the eye
  • Perform a study to see if our new package works amongst eyecare workers in Rwanda

The significance of our research is that massive expansion of DR screening is needed and our package offers the hope to be able to do this.

Associated SFC GCRF funded projects on the St Andrews research portal