THIRTY FIVE YEARS OF INFLUENCE
In 1986, the Pynoos and Neely families, two Southern California families affected by keratoconus, placed a small advertisement in a Los Angeles newspaper seeking others interested in learning more about KC. The response was significant. They realized the demand for a support organization. NKCF was formed to provide information and education about this condition.
In 2006, NKCF became a part of the Discovery Eye Foundation, a nonprofit that supports eye research and patient education. The National Keratoconus Foundation hosted a message board promoting interactions among families affected by KC, and produced the booklet, What is Keratoconus? A Reference Guide for Patients and their Families, which was updated and revised over the years. The current version, Keratoconus Patient Guide was published in 2017. Like previous editions, the book has been sent, free of charge, to tens of thousands of individuals living in the US. Electronic copies are made available to internationals requesting information.
In 2016, Discovery Eye Foundation transferred the assets and program of NKCF to the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of California, Irvine. With the additional expertise available at an academic medical center, NKCF has been able to broaden its reach, promoting eye research, advocating, educating and raising awareness about the experience of living with keratoconus.
Today, NKCF is the world’s oldest and largest keratoconus-focused organization, with a database of more than 25,000 patients and care providers. NKCF regularly communicates with the public through webinars, newsletters and social media posts.
NKCF also hosted the first meeting of the Task Force on Down syndrome and Keratoconus. Dr. Ann Ostrovsky MD, of New York University leads this group. Members include pediatric optometrists and ophthalmologists, and cornea and contact lens specialists from across the US who have experience working with the DS community.
The number of people who have viewed our Evening Webinars live or on YouTube since 2019.
The number of countries, including the US, where subscribers to our newsletter, NKCF Update are located.