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Global Eye Site

What is Global Eye SITE®?

Pediatric glaucoma is a leading cause of irreversible blindness in children throughout the world. There is a global need for physicians who treat pediatric glaucoma.

Helping to save the sight and change the lives of children with glaucoma – worldwide, Global Eye Site® is an observership program dedicated to the training of skilled surgeons throughout the world at Bascom Palmer Eye Institute – the global leader in eye care, vision research, and ophthalmology education. The ground-breaking program’s curriculum will include the workup and management of childhood glaucoma, ocular syndromes, and ocular genetics.


Global Eye SITE® is an innovative program of The Samuel & Ethel Balkan International Pediatric Glaucoma Center. Since 2017 Global Eye SITE® has hosted skilled surgeons from areas of need around the globe at Bascom Palmer to be trained in all aspects of the treatment and management of pediatric glaucoma, then returning home to train others. This groundbreaking program’s curriculum includes the workup and management of childhood glaucoma, ocular syndromes, and ocular genetics.

Participants are given the opportunity to work with leading specialists in pediatric glaucoma, pediatric ophthalmology, and genetics from the University of Miami at The Balkan Center. Global Eye SITE® promotes a culture of continuous learning, ultimately increasing the availability of physicians in an area dedicated to saving the sight and changing the lives of children with glaucoma. This allows Global Eye SITE® to have a lasting and growing impact on reducing preventable blindness due to glaucoma worldwide.

The Balkan Center is more than just a clinic, we’re a team working together to make a positive impact on the lives of children with glaucoma. Beyond the walls of the Center we promote collaborative research, provide support for patients outside of the doctor’s office, participate in international initiatives with other institutions and train physicians from all around the globe to increase the accessibility of care for children with glaucoma, and more.

Doctor and patient shaking hands


In the spring of 2016, millions of people around the world shared in the precious moments when 2-year-old Nicolly Pereira saw her mother for the first time. Due to the lack of specialized training for physicians to provide care for patients with pediatric glaucoma, many glaucoma specialists and pediatric ophthalmologists may be at a loss for proper treatment of children with glaucoma in their care. Throughout every region of the world, even in areas with access to specialized ophthalmic care, many children with glaucoma do not have access to physicians with the proper training and tools to provide treatment.

Born in 2014 in rural Brazil, Nicolly was diagnosed with pediatric glaucoma shortly after birth. She underwent seven unsuccessful, yet well done, surgeries that helped to protect her vision, but did not treat the pediatric glaucoma causing her vision loss. Global Eye SITE® began by hosting Nicolly’s surgeon, Dr. Lucas Nicacio, at Bascom Palmer Eye Institute for an intensive 3-month observership in which he learned the surgical and medical management of pediatric glaucoma. With only one surgery, Nicolly’s vision was saved by Dr. Alana L. Grajewski, professor of clinical ophthalmology and Director of The Samuel & Ethel Balkan International Pediatric Glaucoma Center at Bascom Palmer Eye Institute. Generous donors covered the costs of her medical trip to Miami.

Since the program’s beginning in 2017, Global Eye SITE® has trained physicians from around the world and throughout the United States.

The Observership

While the physician is at The Balkan Center, they watch live pediatric glaucoma surgeries performed by specialists at Bascom Palmer and have access to recordings of past surgeries to study. Observers work closely with pediatric glaucoma specialist and are able to participate in wet labs involving hands on surgical training with the use of donor human or model eyes. Observers are also invited to participate in all Bascom Palmer educational programs.

They return home with educational materials and are prepared to treat the children of their region, given any necessary equipment needed and provided with ongoing support from our specialists.


Global Eye SITE® observers have the opportunity to be supported by friends of The Balkan Center. Training awards can be dedicated to support physicians from anywhere on the map, even the United States, during their Global Eye SITE® observership. Observers have come from all areas of the world including: Brazil, Suriname, the Midwestern USA, Israel, Mexico, and Ghana.

Training Awards cover costs such as transportation to and from Miami, Florida including domestic and international airline travel, a fully furnished living space for the duration of the observership (ranging from 2 weeks to 3 months), limited living expenses, administrative fees, educational materials, access to online resources, necessary surgical tools and operating room time.

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Ways to Give

Support Bascom Palmer Eye Institute's The Samuel & Ethel Balkan International Pediatric Glaucoma Center.