Statement By Ms Gertroedh Saal On Donation From Sri Lankan Eye Donation Society

10 November 2009

The African National Congress believes that there have been many achievements in improving access to health care, however much still needs to be in terms of quality of care, making services available to all South Africans and ensuring better health outcomes.

In line with our commitment, the Sri Lankan Eye Donation Society has donated 100 corneas on Wednesday, 04 November 09, helping at least 100 visually impaired South Africans. The donation is a culmination of a partnership between the High Commission of Sri Lanka, the Department of International Relations and Cooperation and the Pretoria Eye Bank. The beneficiaries include young children, which some are believed to have dropped out of school as a result of cornea disease.

Diseases affecting the cornea are major cause of blindness worldwide. Corneal blindness is complicated and encompasses a wide variety of infectious and inflammatory eye diseases that cause corneal scarring, which ultimately leads to functional blindness.

The African National Congress commends the Sri Lankan Eye Donation Society, as this initiative changed the lives of people who were suffering from a corneal type of blindness.

I thank you!

Gertroedh Saal, MP
Tel: 021 403 3094