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Professor Jefitha Karimurio is the Chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology of the University of Nairobi and a member of the expert committee for elimination and certification of elimination of neglected tropical diseases in Kenya which was appointed by the Cabinet Secretary for Health in the Kenya Gazette of 10th August 2018. Vol. CXX—No. 95; GAZETTE NOTICE No.8059. Moreover, Prof. Karimurio is a member of the East Central and Southern Africa (ECSA) Health Community Expert Committee on Eye Health. He has broad experience in teaching at university level, research, international consultancy and programme management. He joined the University of Nairobi in 1995 as a lecturer, became an associate Professor in 2013 and Chairman of Department in 2015. He is an active member of the Government of Kenya Inter-Agency Coordinating Committee for Eye Health (ICC-EH) which provides technical advice on eye care policy development to Government and partners.

In 2012, Professor Karimurio became the first Kenyan university lecturer to acquire a PhD in Ophthalmology (eye medicine). Additionally, he is a holder of a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (1984) and Master of medicine in Ophthalmology (1990) from the University of Nairobi, Master of Science degree in community ophthalmology (1999) from University College London (UCL) and a PhD in Ophthalmology (2012) from the University of Melbourne.

His outstanding career spans several decades. He rose from a Medical Officer Intern in Machakos in 1984 through the ranks of a Medical officer (Murang´a hospital), Medical Superintendent/Zonal Eye Surgeon (Machakos and Nyeri General Hospitals) to become the acting Provincial Medical Office (PMO) for Central Province in 1994.

Between 1995 and 2002, Professor Karimurio worked as a University of Nairobi lecturer, Coordinator of the Kenya Ophthalmic Programme (KOPC) of the Ministry of Health and secretary to the National Prevention of Blindness Committee (PBC). He performed these jobs with excellence until 2002 when he spearheaded the creation of a Division of Ophthalmic services (DOS) at the MOH and handed over the rapidly growing eye care programme to an MOH employee. In 2014, the DOS was re-named the Ophthalmic Service Unit (OSU).

During his tenure as KOPC, secretary to the PBC and founder head of the DOS, Professor Karimurio midwifed historical eye care policy developments and initiated projects such as Ophthalmic Nursing (ON) training, Primary Eye Care (PEC) programme, implantation of intraocular lens after cataract surgery and the Kenya trachoma control project. Also, he was the International Agency for Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) Co-Chairman for the Eastern African Region from 1999 to 2004, Wold Health Organization prevention of blindness consultant to Eritrea from 2004-5, Prevention of blindness consultant to several NGOs and governments in Africa and the Kenyan representative to the Global Prevention of avoidable Blindness (VISION 2020) and Elimination of Trachoma (GET2020) fora.

Professor Karimurio is a founder fellow of the East Africa College of Ophthalmology (FEACO), editor of the Journal of the College of Ophthalmologist for Eastern, Central and Southern African (JOECSA) and member of the Scientific Committee of the College of Ophthalmologist for Eastern, Central and Southern African region (COECSA). He was the Chairman of Scientific Committee of the 2015 COECSA Congress.

Professor Karimurio has been honoured with several awards including the Distinguished Neglected Tropical Disease (NTD) Researcher Award (2014), Centre for Eye Research Australia outstanding contribution of a student award (2012), Harold Mitchell Postgraduate Travel Fellowship award (2012), William Angliss (Victoria) Charitable Fund travel award (2011), Melbourne International Fee Remission Scholarship (2009), Melbourne International Research Scholarship (2009), Department for International Development (UK) scholarship award (1998) and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) scholarship (1996).

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