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Mayor Bloomberg Declares March 6, 2008 World Glaucoma Day in New York City
Date:2/27/2008

NEW YORK, Feb. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Joining an international effort to raise awareness about the threat of glaucoma, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg has officially proclaimed March 6, 2008 as World Glaucoma Day in New York City. The day will be marked around the globe by awareness and educational events organized by glaucoma institutions and local patient support groups worldwide, as listed on http://www.wgday.net.

The proclamation from Mayor Bloomberg states, "Drawing on the collective strength of patient support groups, medical professionals, and glaucoma institutions across the globe, World Glaucoma Day will help countless individuals avoid the preventable vision loss that arises from this prevalent disease. I commend the World Glaucoma Association and the World Glaucoma Patient Association for initiating this crucial public awareness campaign."

"We are honored to have Mayor Bloomberg and New York City join our team and publicly support our efforts," said Dr. Robert Ritch, professor and chief of glaucoma services at The New York Eye and Ear Infirmary, co-founder of the World Glaucoma Patient Association, and member of the World Glaucoma Day committee for the World Glaucoma Association. "Raising awareness about glaucoma and the benefits of early detection is the main goal for this first annual event and having World Glaucoma Day officially commemorated by New York City is a wonderful way to start."

Known as "the sneak thief of sight," glaucoma is a disease characterized by gradual loss of vision resulting from death of the cells in the eye which transmits visual images through the optic nerve to the brain. As the optic nerve becomes increasingly damaged, permanent vision loss and blindness can occur. Early detection is the key to treating and halting the effects of glaucoma, but current worldwide estimates reveal that more than half of glaucoma sufferers do not even realize they have the disease
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SOURCE World Glaucoma Day
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