Exploring eye care pathways, patient priorities and economics in Pakistan: a scoping review and expert consultation study with thematic analysis

Manal Malik*, Niall Strang, Pauline Campbell, Sven Jonuscheit*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
212 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose: As the prevalence of eye diseases increases, demand for effective, accessible and equitable eye care grows worldwide. This is especially true in lower and middle-income countries, which have variable levels of infrastructure and eco-nomic resources to meet this increased demand. In the present study we aimed to review the literature on eye care in Pakistan comprehensively, with a particular focus on eye care pathways, patient priorities and economics.Methods: A systematic scoping review was performed to identify literature re-lating to eye care in Pakistan. Searches of relevant electronic databases and grey literature were carried out. The results were analysed through a mixed methods approach encompassing descriptive numerical summary and thematic analysis. To consolidate results and define priority areas for future study, expert consultation exercises with key stakeholders were conducted using qualitative semi- structured interviews.Results: One hundred and thirty-two papers (published and unpublished) were included in the final review. The majority (n = 93) of studies utilised a quantitative design. Seven interlinked themes were identified: eye care pathways, burden of eye disease, public views on eye-related issues, workforce, barriers to uptake of eye care services, quality of eye care services and economic impact of blindness. Research priorities included investigating the eye care workforce, the quality and efficiency of current eye care services, eye care services available in rural Pakistan and the costs and benefits related to eye care provision and sustaining eye care programmes.Conclusions: To the best of our knowledge, this is the first review to synthesise evidence from papers across the field relating to eye care in Pakistan. As such, this work provides new insights into the achievements of the national eye health pro-gramme, challenges in eye care in Pakistan and priority areas for future research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)694-716
Number of pages23
JournalOphthalmic and Physiological Optics
Issue number4
Early online date23 Mar 2022
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2022


  • eye care services
  • thematic analysis
  • Pakistan
  • blindness
  • visual impairment
  • scoping review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sensory Systems
  • Ophthalmology
  • Optometry


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