Eversight, Department of Health – Abu Dhabi partner to establish UAE’s first eye and tissue bank

The partnership was formalized at the recent International Conference for Initiatives on Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation in Abu Dhabi.

The partnership was formalized at the recent International Conference for Initiatives on Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation in Abu Dhabi.

Eversight and the Department of Health – Abu Dhabi (DoH), the regulator of the healthcare sector in the Emirate, are partnering to establish the first eye and tissue bank in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

According to a news release, the partnership was formalized at the recent International Conference for Initiatives on Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation in Abu Dhabi.

“The establishment of the UAE’s first eye and tissue bank will provide a critical resource to the approximately one million people in the region who suffer from corneal blindness, including more than 12,000 people in the UAE,” said Erik Hellier, director of Global Development at Eversight. “We are excited to partner with the DoH on this project that is directly aligned with our goals of creating and restoring vision health around the world, and leveraging our expertise, cultural competence and philanthropic support to help the UAE develop its own eye banking infrastructure.”

Moreover, under terms of the agreement Eversight will handle the development and implementation of comprehensive medical standards, quality assurance protocols and standard operating procedures in compliance with all laws and regulations of the UAE and in accordance with eye banking best practices.

The DoH will be responsible for obtaining all necessary approvals for the establishment and operation of the eye and tissue bank, serving as an importer for corneas and other eye-related tissues into the region and working to integrate the eye/tissue banking program with the UAE National Program for Organ Donation.

This initiative will also strengthen mutual collaboration in activities related to knowledge sharing, human capability building and clinical research.

“Under the directives of our wise leadership, Abu Dhabi continues to partner with leading international bodies to elevate its national healthcare operations across all fronts,” said HE Dr. Jamal Mohammed Al Kaabi, Undersecretary of the Department of Health. “We are proud to partner with Eversight to establish yet another impactful program that contributes to maintaining and enhancing lives in the UAE and beyond. Through this partnership, we aim to further improve healthcare outcomes and facilitate quick and seamless operations for all patients in need of eye-tissue transplantation in the UAE.”

According to the news release, an estimated 2.2 billion people worldwide are impacted by blindness and visual impairment. Approximately one billion of these individuals are coping with blindness or visual impairment that can be characterized as preventable or not sufficiently addressed. This includes 12 million people who suffer from corneal blindness, making it the fourth leading cause of blindness globally. Eversight is working to address this global burden and help make vision a reality for more people worldwide. For more information about Eversight’s global vision, visit eversightvision.org/global.

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