Poverty threatens infant's sight in central Vietnam

TN News

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A blind couple from the central province of Phu Yen are seeking help to prevent their eight-month old daughter suffering their fate.

Huynh Thi My Le, 30, and her husband, Nguyen Van Du, 26, sell lottery tickets on the street in Nha Trang Town, Khanh Hoa Province, carrying their baby Nguyen Thi Cam Thu. Du was born blind while Le lost her sight to smallpox when she was four.

They used to leave the girl at home with her grandmother, but took her to the Khanh Hoa General Hospital after the grandmother said there's something "abnormal" with her eyes.

Doctors at the hospital recommended them to go to Ho Chi Minh City, Le said. "Doctors in the city said there are cataracts near her pupils and she will be blind without surgery." 

After their latest visit to Ho Chi Minh City this week, doctors have said they will perform a surgery three months later, when she's older. During this period, she will undergo further examinations to see if there are any heart defects that needed to be treated first. The doctors also said they have not arrived at any conclusions on potential links between her parents' impairment and Thu's condition.

But Le said they cannot afford the treatment, which the doctors have said will cost around a thousand dollars.

The couple earn around VND100,000 (US$4.80) a day from selling lottery tickets, just enough for cheap meals for the three of them.

At night, they sleep on the concrete floor at the house of the lottery ticket dealer.

They have returned to Nha Trang after the latest visit to Ho Chi Minh City.


Thanh Nien newspaper, Vietinbank account number 102010000116341.

They can also be handed over to Thanh Nien offices nationwide at

- 248 Cong Quynh Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City

- 2nd floor, No. 17, 167 Tay Son Street, Dong Da District, Hanoi

- 41B Cat Cut Street, Le Chan District, Hai Phong

- 1 Nha Tho Street, Thanh Hoa Town, Thanh Hoa Province

- 144 Bach Dang Street, Da Nang

- A22A Tran Le Street, Da Lat l 133 Le Loi Street, Quy Nhon Town, Binh Dinh Province

- 120 Thong Nhat Street, Nha Trang

- 88 Vo Thi Sau Street, Bien Hoa Town, Dong Nai Province

- 99 Tran Van Hoai Street, Can Tho.

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