GivingBacktheGiftofSight

An old Creek Indian proverb states, "We warm our hands by the fires we did not build, we drink the water from the wells we did not dig, we eat the fruit of the trees we did not plant, and we stand on the shoulders of giants who have gone before us."

In 1961, the Eye Bank Association of America (EBAA) was formed. This association stewards over 80 eye banks in the US with over 60,000 recipients each year of corneal tissue that restores sight to blind people. Over one million men, women, and children have had vision restored and pain relieved from an eye injury or disease. The Eye Bank Association of America is truly a giant whose shoulders that we stand upon today. Their service and foresight in helping patients with blindness is remarkable.

 

It is important to give back the gift of sight. You may be asking, "How does this affect me?" On the back of your driver's license form, there is a box that can be checked for being an organ donor. Many people forego this option because they are not educated on the benefits of it. There are many eye diseases that rob people of sight because of an opacity, pain, or disease that causes malformation of the curvature of the cornea, which can be treated by a corneal transplant.

When it comes to corneal tissue, virtually everyone is a universal donor, because the cornea is not dependant on blood type. Corneal transplant surgery has a 95% success rate. According to a recent study by EBAA, eye disorders are the 5th costliest to the US economy behind heart disease, cancer, emotional disorders, and pulmonary disease. The cost is incurred when the person, for example, is a working-age adult and can no longer hold a job because of vision issues. The gift of a corneal transplant can be one way to restore not only their vision, but their way of life, and their contribution to society.

By becoming a donor, or educating others to consider being an organ donor, you can give the gift of sight to someone on a waiting list. When you educate others to give the precious gift of sight, you become a giant whose shoulders others can stand on. Become a donor today.

 

For more information go to www.restoresight.org or contact your local driver's license office

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