Chandigarh, September 9, 2015: Nearly 10,000 people have pledged their eyes during the 30th National Eye Donation Fortnight observed by Department of Health & Family Welfare Punjab from 25th August to 8th September 2015. This was revealed here today by Ms.Vini Mahajan, Principal Secretary Health & Family Welfare, Punjab. She told that during this Fortnight a number of rallies, nukkad natak, seminars & workshops etc. were held at districts, blocks and grass root levels across Punjab to motivate people to come forward and donate their eyes. She said that eye donation was a noble cause with which one can help others to see the world with one's eyes.
While giving further information about the fortnight Ms. Mahajan informed that nearly 1.2 lac people in country are blind because of Corneal diseases. Every year 20,000 new cases are added. Each year, 1 lac healthy corneas are required for transplantation and there are large number of people who have to wait for corneal transplant including a substantial number of youth in the country. In Punjab around 2,77,000 people are suffering from blindness, out of which more than 3,000 people are blind due to corneal disease. She said that about 1000 eye balls are procured for corneal transplantation in Punjab each year. She told that any person with clear cornea of any age/sex can donate the eyes and even people who may be using contact lenses, spectacles or have undergone any kind of eye surgery can also donate their eyes. As per 'Transplantation of Human Organs Act', cornea can be taken only from a deceased person. She added that eyes should be donated within 6 hours of the death of a person. She stated that anyone who wishes to donate eyes can consult the Doctors or Eye donation Counselor in the nearest hospital or contact toll-free helpline no. 104. A pledge form is also available online at website link http://pbhealth.gov.in/pledge_eye.htm. She added that planning is underway to clear backlog of corneal blindness in Punjab by involving all govt. and private eye banks.
It is pertinent to mention that apart from the members of the civil society, many employees of the Health and Family Welfare Department including the Principal Secretary, Ms. Vini Mahajan, Dr Bhag Mal, Director Health Services, Punjab and Dr Rakesh Gupta, State Programme Officer, NPCB have pledged their eyes during the fortnight.
Wednesday, September 9, 2015