The Orbis Flying Eye Hospital is unlike any plane you’ve seen before. A state-of-the-art teaching facility complete with operating room, classroom and recovery room – this amazing aircraft has been an example of the marriage between medicine and aviation since 1982.
Equal parts teacher, advocate and envoy in the global effort to end avoidable blindness our state-of-the-art flying teaching hospital allows our world leading volunteers to travel the world sharing knowledge and developing skills with the communities that need it most.
Once a cargo plane, the interior of our third-generation Flying Eye Hospital has been completely transformed thanks to the support of our many generous partners.
Thanks to our generous and compassionate supporters, the Flying Eye Hospital has been a call to action for better eye care around the world for more than three decades. Wherever it lands, it raises awareness, creates change and rallies supporters – from local governments, global organizations, philanthropists, to the general public – to join the global fight to end avoidable blindness.
Flying Eye Hospital – interactive timeline
From 1982 to present day – from a DC-8 to an MD-10 – step aboard the Flying Eye Hospital and see history in the making.
The power of the plane
The Flying Eye Hospital is invited to help train local eye care teams by officials in every country it lands.
Not only does it provide a space to train doctors, nurses and medical technicians, but it opens the doors of prime ministers, presidents and ministries of health so that we can make the case for investing in eye health for all. Our amazing staff and volunteers can then work in partnership with local hospitals to understand skills shortages, and work where the need is greatest.
This level of access has allowed Orbis to help change health policies for the better, reach doctors in need of training, improve the lives of those lacking access to care, and not least of all, develop lasting bonds with people around the globe to ensure a long-term impact.
The latest technology
The Flying Eye Hospital is not only packed with the latest medical equipment, it has some of the very latest training facilities, too. The entire plane is linked up through an advanced audio visual system, meaning those in the classroom can watch surgeries happening in the operating room live in 3D – making it as close to the real thing as looking down the microscope yourself.
But no matter what, Orbis always creates tailored and customized curriculum for the partner hospital’s needs based on their equipment’s capabilities. Volunteer Faculty train local doctors both on board the aircraft and at the local hospital, providing education that is both high-quality and practical for when the Flying Eye Hospital departs.
And thanks to our telemedicine platform – Cybersight – doctors from all over the world can join our training programs with the click of a button.