Foundation Fighting Blindness supports ‘Eye-Bonds’ legislation
The Foundation Fighting Blindness is urging Congress to pass a bill that aims to speed up cures for blindness by allowing the creation of “Eye-Bonds,” according to a press release.
Introduced Wednesday in the House of Representatives by Republican Reps. Pete Sessions of Texas, Fred Upton of Michigan and Gus Bilirakis of Florida, as well as Democratic Rep. Sanford Bishop of Georgia, H.R. 6421, the Faster Treatments and Cures for Eye Diseases Act, would allow for the creation of Eye-Bonds to fund translational research and advance treatments and cures for blindness and severe vision impairment.
Translational research often never happens due to lack of funding, especially in the case of rare diseases or conditions, the release said.
“On behalf of the entire blind and vision-impaired community, we are grateful for the actions by these members of Congress and urge others to join as co-sponsors of this important legislation,” Benjamin Yerxa, PhD, CEO of the Foundation Fighting Blindness, said in the release. “There is no doubt that vision-saving and vision-restoring research sitting on shelves needs to be unleashed so patients can benefit. We are confident that Eye-Bonds will work.”
Eye-Bonds would finance loans totaling $1 billion for new projects over 4 years in the pilot phase, the release said. How many projects are funded and at what amount would be determined by underwriters and would not exceed $250 million each year.