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Eye Bank Association Of India

Eye Bank Association Of India
Himabindu Chitta /
It is shocking that even today, uniform standards do not exist in India for a process as simple and commonplace as eye donation. The Eye Bank Association of India (EBAI) is making a pioneering attempt to co-ordinate the efforts of eye banks all over the country, and ensure that necessary regulations are drafted and enforced. The EBAI works in tandem with ORBIS, an international eye-care organization based in New York.

Trained EBAI volunteers are placed in every major hospital in the city to identify dead or dying patients and convince them to become donors. Of every ten patients who are approached, only three on average agree. Most families do not want the body of their loved ones to be disfigured.

Popular myths about eye donation range from the mundane to the bizarre:

(a) It is a complicated procedure that will delay the final rites.
(b) It involves great loss of blood.
(c) The dead person will be born blind in his/her next birth.

Few people realize that eye donation is a simple procedure performed in minutes, with minimum blood loss. Awareness camps and seminars are conducted regularly to dispel such notions among the general public.

Volunteer Opportunities
EBAI volunteers have no fixed job description. Often, people are simply asked to help in whatever way they can. If the volunteer is an IT professional, for example, the EBAI might request him/her to help with the development of a new software. Students may be placed in charge of awareness camps or asked to distribute pamphlets in their neighborhood.

Encourage the people you know to donate their eyes and try to dispel myths about eye donation. If you work in a hospital or in a health-related industry, you might be in a position to influence people in the right direction.

Donations of both money and time are welcome. Those interested may contact Dr. Ganesh at the phone number given.
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