Vistar Insights

Give the Gift of Sight

Monday, June 01, 2015

Every year, the Eye Bank Association of America promotes March as National Eye Donor Month, raising awareness of the need to donate eyes for corneal transplants. The donated organs are also used for research and education purposes. 

Corneal transplants are always in high demand, with more than a million corneal transplants performed since 1961, according to the EBAA. As there is no synthetic substitute for human eye tissue, eye donation is crucial to reviving the sight of individuals, from newborns to the elderly. On average, 48,000 people receive a corneal transplant that restores their sight.   

One of the best things about becoming an eye donor is that anyone is eligible to do so. Unlike other organs, the donor’s blood type doesn’t need to match that of the recipient — corneal tissue is universal.

Since Ronald Reagan proclaimed the first National Eye Donor Month in 1983, a member of Congress has read a proclamation in the Congressional Record every March to note this special occasion.

To learn more about how you can become an eye donor, visit the EBAA website.

Find more information about organ donation in the state of Virginia here