Our 5W Wednesday series highlights a variety of health care organizations, professionals and programs that keep our community healthy.
Who is helped by the Michigan Eye Bank?
The Michigan Eye-Bank is a charitable organization dedicated to helping restore sight to more than a thousand Michigan residents each year, thanks to the generosity of eye donors and their families, volunteers and charitable contributors. Countless others benefit from the Michigan Eye-Bank’s Eye and Vision Research Program that helps fund studies related to the treatments and cures for blinding eye diseases such as glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy and macular degeneration.
What does the Michigan Eye Bank do?
Our mission is the restoration of sight. This is accomplished through:
- Recovery, evaluation and distribution of eye tissue for transplantation, as well as for ophthalmic research and training.
- Funding of peer-reviewed research grants in support of improved diagnosis, treatment and prevention of eye and vision disorders.
- Provision of public and professional education to increase awareness of the continuing need for donation of eye tissue, as well as all other tissues and organs.
- Supporting the continued development of eye banking, domestically and internationally, and the continuing development of related professional disciplines.
Where can you find them?
The Michigan Eye Bank is located at 4889 Venture Drive Ann Arbor, MI 48108.
Be sure to view their website, www.michiganeyebank.org, or check them out on facebook and twitter. Also visit www.donortribute.org, a special site created to pay tribute to eye donors and their families.
When can I sign up to be a donor?
Anyone can join the Michigan Organ Donor Registry at anytime, regardless of age or medical history. A link to the State’s registry can be found at www.michiganeyebank.org. It takes less than a minute to join the registry, which was created for those wishing to be eye, organ and tissue donors to help save or improve the lives of others. Once you’ve joined the Registry, the Secretary of State will mail you a red heart for the front of your license. Signing the back of your driver’s license is no longer the correct way to make your donation wishes known.
Why does the Michigan Eye Bank exist?
The Michigan Eye-Bank has existed since 1957 because there are some forms of vision loss that can be cured through corneal transplantation, which is the replacement of a diseased or damaged cornea (the clear dime-sized piece of tissue found at the front of the eye) with a donor cornea. We exist so that others may see again or in some cases, for the first time.