From March 1 - 31, we will be recognizing, celebrating, and educating all North Carolinians on the importance of eye and cornea donation and transplantation. According to the Eye Bank Association of America, National Eye Donor Month (established in 1983) seeks to raise awareness for the need to donate eyes, and to celebrate donors and corneal recipients. President Ronald Reagan proclaimed the first National Eye Donor Month, and since then a member of Congress has read a proclamation into the Congressional Record each March to note this special occasion.
So, why all the attention to corneal donation and transplantation? Almost 50,000 corneal transplant occur in the United States each year. Over 90 percent of corneal transplant surgeries are successful! Imagine: for part or all of someone's life, the ability to see has been out of reach. However, thanks to the selfless gift of a corneal donor, two people can receive the gift of sight. Eye and cornea donations also contribute to research efforts in order to help address other blindness-causing diseases.
We encourage you to check out this incredible video made by Discovery Health about The North Carolina Eye Bank. As the video highlights the miracle that is cornea donation and transplantation, we encourage you to share your wishes with your family members; also, most importantly, make your wishes known by registering at the DMV or online (DonateLifeNC.org). Join the conversation all month on Twitter using the hashtag #GiftOfSight.