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FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. and the world’s largest express transportation company, today celebrates their 30 years of partnership with the ORBIS Flying Eye Hospital - a mobile hospital dedicated to treating and preventing blindness in developing countries. Stationed at the Al Bateen Executive Airport in Abu Dhabi from 29 September - 3 October 2012, the Flying Eye Hospital will then travel to Ethiopia to perform surgeries, treat patients and train eye care teams.
The ORBIS Flying Eye Hospital is the world's only airborne ophthalmic training facility housed inside a DC-10 aircraft, which has been maintained by FedEx Corp. for 30 years. The aircraft is fully fitted with a state-of-the-art operating theatre, healthcare innovations and solutions needed to improve and restore patients’ sight. Since its inception in 1982, volunteer pilots from FedEx have been flying the dedicated team of doctors, nurses and technicians to remote locations across the globe, restoring the eyesight of people in 77 countries. Along with its on-the ground programs, Orbis – the nonprofit organization, has trained over 300,000 medical professionals and provided over 18 million treatments to people from 90 countries.
As well as the provision of maintenance and pilots, FedEx also supports the Fellows Program, which provides an opportunity for talented local doctors to receive the continuing medical education needed to address leading causes of avoidable blindness within their countries.
“Over 39 million people in the world are blind, 80% of all visual impairment is preventable or curable. ORBIS works in developing countries to train and teach eye care teams the skills they need to treat their communities because 90% of this blindness is present in the developing world”, said Karen Jaques - Head of Corporate Partnerships, ORBIS EMEA.
“It is inspiring to see the FedEx crew members and ORBIS healthcare professionals’ dedication and efforts to support the prevention and treatment of blindness around the world”, commented David Ross - Senior Vice President, FedEx Express, Middle East, Indian Subcontinent and Africa operations. “FedEx will remain dedicated to this noble cause as part of our commitment to proactively improve the quality of life in the communities we live and work in”, he added.
To mark the occasion in Abu Dhabi, FedEx employees and their families will be touring the ORBIS Flying Eye Hospital, to learn more about this unique initiative.
For more information about FedEx’ volunteerism and the communities it serves, please visit fedexcares.com.