Aravind Eye Hospital was founded by Dr. Venkataswamy in 1976 who wanted to establish an alternate health care model that would supplement the efforts of the Government in fighting the blindness in India.
The motivation behind Dr V to start this organisation was to eradicate needless blindness which he knew could not be achieved within the paradigm of a charitable organisation. Thus he set about his mission to mass market eye care like McDonalds or Pizza Hut. To do this Dr V developed an innovative business model where a small portion of the customers subsidize the majority.
An integral part of Aravind’s services to combat blindness is its community outreach program: free eye camps. These screening camps, conducted every day, provide basic eye care services to distant rural populations, followed by necessary treatment or surgery at either the camp or base hospital. Teams of doctors work closely with community leaders and service providers to organize camps and get the word out.
To take up the challenge of blindness, Aravind has recognised the need to develop human resources - ophthalmologists, paramedics, eye care managers and support service personnel. Several training programmes have been designed to develop ophthalmic manpower. Catering to all levels of ophthalmic teaching and training, these are intended not only for ophthalmologists but also for ophthalmic technicians, opticians, clinical assistants, outreach coordinators and health care managers. Apart from these, a six week training course in the maintenance of ophthalmic surgical instruments and other equipment for technicians is also offered. With less than 1% of the country's ophthalmic manpower, Aravind accounts for 5% of the ophthalmic surgeries performed nationwide. 2,313,398 outpatient visits were handled and 270,444 surgeries were performed at the Aravind Eye Hospitals in 2006. Two-third of the outpatient visits and three-fourth of the surgeries were serviced to the poor, free of cost.
The prime target of Aravind Eye Care to serve the society economically was to by targeting low-cost/high-volume products, where small margins can be offset with a high volume of sales. Cataract surgery in India fits this profile perfectly, because of India’s high prevalence and incidence of cataracts.
Table of Contents
Section I : Vision and Mission of Dr. V4
Section II : Aravind Eye Care – Business Model and Strategy7 Section III: Steps in A Cataract Surgery10
Section IV: Typical Costs and Revenues for Cataract Surgery13 Section V: Description of Aravind Eye Care’s Operation15
Section VI: Analysis and Commentary20
Section VII: Conclusion27
Section I : Vision and Mission of Dr. V
Warren Bennis and Burt Nanus, authors of "Leaders: The Strategies for Taking Charge", identify Vision as a concept central to their theory of leadership. "To choose a direction, a leader must first develop a mental image of a possible and desirable future state of the organisation. This image, which we call vision, may be as vague as a dream or as precise as a goal statement. The critical point is that Vision articulates a credible, realistic attractive future for the organisation".
To simplify the above statement, vision describes the future that the vision creator sees in connection to the organisation. For a lot of organisations vision symbolises their unfettered ambitions. For e.g. Canon when it began wanted to “Beat Xerox” (who was the absolute giant at that point of time), Panasonic wanted to work towards a “quest for zero defect”. However a vision is much more than that. It should also incorporate within itself, the core values of the organisation. Quigley defines corporate values as "the rules or guidelines by which a corporation exhorts its members to behaviour consistent with its order, security, and growth ... Values and beliefs are the most fundamental of the three elements of Vision". Finally and most importantly a...