ANN ARBOR, Mich., Jan. 10, 2022 — Eversight received a $27,000 research grant from the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (BCBSM) Foundation to support ongoing evaluation of the prevalence of COVID-19 in donated ocular tissue from different demographic groups. The Eversight study is being conducted in partnership with Eversight Medical Director Shahzad I. Mian, MD, Kellogg Eye Center, University of Michigan, and Ashok Kumar, PhD, Kresge Eye Institute, Wayne State University.
The BCBSM Foundation has funded hundreds of health programs that target health disparities, physical health, behavioral health, substance use disorder, mental health, maternal-infant health, health inequities and the social determinants of health by addressing health care access, cost and quality. BCBSM demonstrates its commitment in many ways to partner organizations like Eversight, having served as the inaugural corporate sponsor of the Michigan Donor Family Gathering, in addition to lending their expertise through the leadership of Vice President of Finance Joseph Radka, who serves on the Eversight Michigan Advisory Board.
“This funding will help Eversight understand the link between COVID-19 and donated ocular tissue, as well as the impact of COVID-19 on various demographic parameters,” said Onkar B. Sawant, PhD, Director of Research & Innovations, Eversight. “We thank the Foundation Board for their trust in our important work. We expect this gift to serve as a catalyst for support for other critical research projects and are excited about the possibilities the future holds for our investigations.”
Eversight is a nonprofit organization with a mission to restore sight and prevent blindness through the healing power of donation, transplantation and research. The Eversight network is responsible for recovering, evaluating and providing human eye tissue for transplantation; supporting research into the causes and cures of blinding eye conditions; promoting donation awareness through public and professional education; and providing humanitarian aid to people around the world in need of corneal transplantation. Operating in Connecticut, Illinois, Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio and South Korea, Eversight works in collaboration with surgeons, researchers, academic medical centers and eye banks across the United States and abroad. For more information, visit eversightvision.org.