FAISALABAD-First ever Eye Bank has been established at Ophthalmology Ward of Allied Hospital with the cooperation of Lyallpur Eye Trust (LET) for the preservation of eye corneas.

The Eye Bank was inaugurated by Deputy Commissioner/Chairman Lyallpur Eye Trust Slaman Ghani on Wednesday. Expressing his views on the occasion, the deputy commissioner said that the idea for the formation of Lyallpur Eye Trust was conceived on the motivation of Dr Sultan for the transplantation and retrieval of eye cornea with organised manner through the local resources by seeking the support of affluent persons of the society.

He said that it was a revolutionary and significant step of establishment of Eye Bank at Allied Hospital. He appreciated the valuable financial cooperation of the trustees, and said that the transplantation of cornea was a great service of the humanity for providing eye sight to the blind. He said that the district administration had focused its attention on providing the best health facilities to the public and various steps had been taken for the upgradation and expansion of the health institutions in the district.

He said that the dialysis facilities had been provided at Tehsil level in the district to facilitate the kidney patients at their doorsteps. He expressed his commitment that all resources would be provided for the promotion and strengthening of Cornea transplantation and retrieval facilities for the sake of the humanity. He emphasised upon raising awareness regarding donating the cornea to the Eye Bank by the relatives of the diseased persons.

Faisalabad Medical University Vice Chancellor Dr Alfareed Zafar said that the teaching hospitals were being upgraded by providing advanced and sophisticated health facilities and medical machinery. He said that the establishment of Eye Bank was a unique and important step for the preservation of eye corneas. He lauded the welfare services of the local industrialists and business community, and said that the element of philanthropy was very prominent and eminent in the Faisalabad. He said that the department of Ophthalmology would be able in transplantation of cornea and receiving the donation of cornea from the society.

He appreciated the cooperation of Lyallpur Eye Trust for enabling the Eye Department having facility and resources for transplantation and retrieval of the corneas. Head of Ophthalmology Department Allied Hospital Dr Sultan said that eye department had been upgraded in different phases for which the foreign NGO Fred Hallow Foundation Australia provided the resources. Giving details of the services he said that the task had been completed to screening the eyesight of schoolchildren of Faisalabad district. The programme was underway in the Toba Tek Singh district, he said.

He claimed that there was no Eye Bank in Pakistan earlier and this was first ever Eye Bank of the country. He said that earlier eye corneas had been imported from Nepal, US, Kuwait and other countries and now all arrangements had been available to retrieve the corneas at local level and its preservations.

He said that first cornea was donated by Sajida Bibi in April 2017 which was a milestone for the department. Prof Sultan said that transplantation and retrieval of cornea programme would be made sustainable under the arrangements of Lyallpur Eye Trust. He added the matchless service would be continued for providing eye sight to the blind.

He said that 10 counsellors were working to mobilise the society for providing donation of corneas for the other humanity. He said that awareness campaign was also being carried out for providing the information regarding donation and transplantation of corneas and all information were available on the website of Lyallpur Eye Trust. Later, the deputy commissioner and others took a round of various sections of Eye Department and visited the Eye Bank.