When your cornea is compromised by injury or disease, you can’t see clearly—if at all.
A mild to severe scratching or scraping of your cornea (e.g., a corneal abrasion) as well as a wide range of congenital, infectious, and inflammatory diseases can lead to cornea-related vision loss and blindness. Individuals with limited access to protective eyewear (e.g., low-wage agricultural laborers and factory workers), deficient in Vitamin A, or vulnerable to bacterial, fungal, or viral infections, especially young children and older adults, are at higher risk for developing corneal blindness.
As most cases of corneal blindness are treatable and preventable, addressing inequities in care is a key priority of our mission to eliminate corneal blindness by 2040.
More than 12 million people suffer needlessly in the dark because of corneal blindness, making it one of the world’s leading causes of avoidable blindness, especially in low-and middle-income countries.
Eliminating corneal blindness will require patient access to good-quality, affordable eye care across all stages of life and the integration of corneal health services into primary healthcare systems.
Although our collective rate of progress depends on many different factors, we have the knowledge and tools to eliminate corneal blindness by 2040.
Improved corneal health outcomes supports progress toward the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for hunger, poverty, good health, education, gender equality, and livelihood.