In Focus: Dr George Moyo

The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust was established in 2012 with the mission to leave a lasting legacy, owned by the whole Commonwealth, in honour of Her Majesty The Queen by making a decisive contribution towards ending avoidable blindness.

We could not achieve our mission without the dedicated work of our partners, and the inspiring individuals whose commitment is enriching the communities in which they live. Each month, The Trust shines a spotlight on one such individual.

This month we explore the work of Dr George Moyo. He is a scholar of the Commonwealth Eye Health Consortium, a programme that is providing fellowships, research and technology to strengthen eye care across the Commonwealth with the aim of bringing quality eye care to all who need it.

George was supported by the Commonwealth Eye Health Consortium to study a Masters in Public Health at the University of Cape Town, which he has recently completed. Before doing his Masters degree, George was the head of the eye department at Mzuzu Central Hospital and decided he needed to develop his department and contribute to Malawian eye health more generally: “I really wanted to understand how I could conduct both scientific and operational research to inform myself, the hospital, the Government and all partners to have evidence-based decisions in planning and executing.”

George’s Masters focused on the impact of trachoma on communities in Malawi. He wanted his research to provide clearer evidence about the associated risks of the disease and how and why the disease affects almost twice as many women compared to men.

This Masters, George says, “has been my breakthrough; all theoretical lessons which I have learnt in all my 10 modules while at UCT are [now] being applied on the ground.” He is currently involved in a national project of trachoma elimination, which is responsible for operational research and using evidence-based decision making to guide all partners who are implementing the World Health Oganisation-endorsed SAFE strategy.

Next year, George will be involved in several trachoma elimination impact surveys. He wants to make sure that all remaining trachoma hotspots are identified and that people at risk of trachoma are informed about how to avoid getting the disease, so that Malawi is verified as trachoma free by 2020.

In March 2017, our Vice-Paton, HRH The Countess of Wessex’s visited  Malawi to see the work we support there. We caught up with George to talk about the life changing work he is doing in the country to help end trachoma. 

Watch George's video here.