On September 20
, 2017 Hurricane Maria caused massive infrastructure damage in Puerto Rico. The unfolding catastrophe took many forms, among them an emergency situation within the ophthalmology community due to a lack of glaucoma medications and a troubling rise in eye infections caused by unsanitary conditions across the island.
In response to the deteriorating situation, Dr. Alma M. Mas-Ramirez (Assistant Professor, Department of Ophthalmology, Wayne State School of Medicine), put out an urgent call requesting donations of antibiotic and glaucoma eye medications on behalf of Dr. Ian Piovanetti, the president of the Puerto Rico Ophthalmology Association.
Dr. Tosin Smith, ophthalmologist and Executive Director of Cure Glaucoma Foundation, responded to the donation request and contacted Susan Navarro and Carolyn Villegas at Allergan. Dr. Smith was well aware of Allergan’s generosity, having received numerous donations of supplies for mission trips she had organized to Africa and Asia.