Leaders in the fight to eliminate curable corneal blindness that brings unnecessary misery to 10 million people worldwide have joined forces from opposite sides of the globe.
“An extreme shortage of cornea tissue available for transplant is a worldwide problem”
In a move that builds on a legacy of innovation in treatment of corneal blindness, the Singapore Eye Bank and the Singapore National Eye Centre will engage consulting services from SightLife eye bank in Seattle, WA to achieve these three local and regional objectives:
1) Increase long-term capacity of the Singapore Eye Bank to recover enough tissue to meet 100% of local need for sight-restoring transplants, and to further develop its education and training initiatives as a centre for excellence in eye banking in Asia.
2) Build on the already proud tradition of cornea donation in Sri Lanka by establishing a model national eye bank in that country, the National Eye Bank of Sri Lanka. The Sri Lankan people are known throughout the world for their service to others through faith-based cornea donation at the end of life.
3) Grow the Association of Eye Banks of Asia (an association formed with the Asia Cornea Society) in its ability to offer services that support member needs and reduce corneal blindness in Asia.
“An extreme shortage of cornea tissue available for transplant is a worldwide problem,” said Professor Donald Tan, Medical Director of both the Singapore Eye Bank and the Singapore National Eye Centre, internationally acclaimed for its corneal transplantation program, and for leadership in corneal blindness prevention through the stewardship of the Asia Cornea Society.
“SightLife is a global leader in eye banking with a dedicated team of experts to support eye bank development around the world. We want to work with the best partners in building local and regional capacity to meet this crucial need.” Professor Tan is also the President of both Asia Cornea Society and the Association of Eye Banks of Asia.
“We are honored at this opportunity to join efforts with the Singapore Eye Bank and the Singapore National Eye Centre, and with colleagues of such international reputation in the ophthalmology field as Professor Tan,” said Monty Montoya, President of SightLife. “Partnerships like this are by far the most effective way to end unnecessary corneal blindness for 10 million people worldwide.”