MIAMI (CBS4) – The Bascom Palmer Eye Institute of the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine is getting involved in helping those in the earthquake and tsunami-ravaged northeastern region of Japan.

On Monday the organization’s Vision Van will be loaded onto a plane at Miami International Airport for a trip to the city of Sendai.

Once it arrives ophthalmologists from Keio University and trained volunteers will use it to offer emergency vision screenings and treatments for those who suffered eye injuries during or after the earthquake and infections and inflammations from contaminated water.

They will also replace eyeglasses for those people who lost them while fleeing the earthquake. The van, a 40-foot converted bus which has three screening stations, an examination room and state of the art equipment, has been stocked with over a thousand ready-made lenses donated by Eye Care Centers of America.

“I really appreciate Bascom Palmers support for the healing of Japan. I went with my team to Northeastern Japan last week to assess the damage and find ways to help the survivors with their ocular needs. I knew, just as you have seen on the news, that many towns had been destroyed. But when I was there I was so shocked that it brought me to tears. From the bottom of my heart I feel that I want to help,” said Dr. Kazuo Tsubota, Chief of the Department of Ophthalmology of the Keio University School of Medicine.

The Vision Van, which also provided emergency eye care services in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, is expected to be in Japan for three months.

Comments (3)
  1. Wendy Hanai says:

    Three cheers and BIG hugz to Prof. T and his medical team (including his secretary, Catherine Oshima) for all the work they have put into getting the mission into full swing and all the assistance required from those at BPEI. With Kazuo at the helm, this mission will be a truely complete success. The people of Sendai, Japan appreciate all the efforts from both sides of the globe. Sending you all my love and strength as your mission becomes a reality. Wendy in Singapore

  2. Kazuo Tsubota says:

    Thanks, Wendy. I will leave Tokyo tonight by Night-Bus to Sendai tonight to welcome vision van. I really appreciate all the help and kindness of Bascom Palmer Eye Institute and people in USA.

  3. Rita Sugano says:

    I know that this mission of yours will be a complete success Dr. T. Wish you and all your team safe travels to Sendai and back. God speed and stay safe! Rita

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