H1 2015 update on global work/growth
SightLife created 12,000 new hands in the first half of 2015.
Claire Bonilla, our Chief Global Officer, recently visited India, where Col. Dr. M. Deshpande, Chief Medical Director at HV Desai Eye Hospital, relayed a phrase commonly used in India for the blind – “mouths with no hands.” The phrase alludes to the burden the blind put on their family, community, and government due to their inability to work.
SightLife Global Programs facilitated over 6,000 transplants in the first half of 2015, exceeding targets with 32% growth over 2014. This is a major shift from last year’s performance, and we’re seeing the fruits of our labor in early 2015 when we restructured agreements and partner relationships, prioritizing opportunities and emphasizing growth. We continue to evolve our partnerships, with new models currently in negotiation to coordinate and/or consolidate eye banking activities for entire states with populations of 50 million or more.
Our quality management program continues a steady march towards total compliance at all partner eye banks. While some eye banks are scheduled for the independent quality audit, others are already on their second year, with successful recertification audit proving that they can keep their quality processes compliant with international standards without SightLife intervention.
SightLife’s surgeon training program is on track with several training events completed this year in India, the most recent at LV Prasad Eye Institute in Hyderabad. This DSEK training course followed previous courses at Disha Eye Hospital, Kolkata and Dr. R.P. Centre for Ophthalmic Sciences, AIIMS, and New Delhi. In the first half of the year, 12 trained surgeons and 12 fellows completed the full curriculum including wet labs and patient surgeries. The purpose of our training program is to increase capacity and capability in-country. We compare all participants’ surgical volume before and after the event, and track their growth over time. So far we’ve seen 7% growth in participants’ surgical volume and expect to see more as the program continues to evolve and pull on the most influential motivational levers.
Reflecting back to the analogy of creating new hands by restoring sight to the blind – as our partner eye banks deliver around 12,000 transplants in total this year, we will put 24,000 hands back to work, moving the equivalent of an entire community from deficiency and dependence to a surplus in food, money, and karma if you will.