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P25-A123 Indo – German GIZ collaboration – impact and way forward in global eye banking
  1. Manisha Acharya1,
  2. Rakhi Nathawat1,
  3. Anna Salz2,
  4. Nea Dierolf2,
  5. Stefanie Eberhard2,
  6. Nicola Hofmann2,
  7. Martin Börgel2,
  8. Virender Sangwan1,
  9. Surender Dixit1
  1. 1Dr. Shroff’s Charity Eye Hospital and Eye Bank (SCEH), New Delhi, India
  2. 2German Society for Tissue Transplantation (DGFG), Hannover, Germany


Purpose Geographical imbalance in cornea supply is a key feature of global eye banking. Most countries of South Asia particularly India suffer from donor cornea shortage which limits the number of keratoplasties, thereby aggravating the already high burden of removable blindness. The purpose of the project is to identify and cross-pollinate best practices from two leading eye banking institutions in India and Germany, and thereby improve service delivery of both systems. The project is supported by the GIZ Hospital Partnerships funding program on behalf of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) with a co-financing by the Else Kröner-Fresenius Foundation (EKFS). It started in 2021 and will last upto 2023.

Methods A joint expert group from both organisations conducted a series of workshops to identify the areas of intervention and specific practices to be introduced at the Indian partner’s region. The overall increase in cornea collections and transplants, documented systemic improvement measures and research output were defined as the key outcomes.

Results Interim results are presented here. Two interventions identified were expansion of catchment area of cornea collection in India, and improved information management system to monitor the progress and efficiency of the collection centres. Under the former intervention, the hub-and-spoke model from the German partner was introduced to the most populous state of India through establishment of two new cornea collection centres (spokes) for Hospital based Cornea collections. In six months these centres have supplied 79 donor corneas leading to 63 transplants at the hub. Under the latter intervention, the specifications of a baseline data capture and operations management system which can be used in low resource settings are being developed.

Conclusion The initiative has shown how best practice from one geography can be adapted and successfully implemented in another geography , Furthermore, the public knowledge resources created in the project can be used by other eye banks to advance eye banking in their respective countries.

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