The Wolfe Foundation Mission
The Wolfe Foundation exists to provide assistance and care to those facing loss of sight who otherwise could not afford treatment.
Compassion for those in need is precisely what led the visionary eye doctor Otis R. Wolfe, MD, to establish The Wolfe Foundation in 1936. It’s what compelled him and compels our doctors today, to donate services to treat patients.
Dr. Wolfe’s original vision for the Foundation included furnishing assistance and care for those facing loss of sight whom simply could not afford the cost of treatment. Of highest priority for Wolfe Eye Clinic physicians are the great many children and adults without private funds or government assistance, who are not sponsored by an organization or club.
Equally committed to the continual pursuit of excellence and advanced technology, Wolfe Eye Clinic physicians charged the Wolfe Foundation with striving to support education and research in ophthalmology.
For more than 70 years, The Wolfe Foundation has assisted Iowans in need to maintain or restore their vision. Today, that need is greater than ever. Age-related eye diseases are the leading cause of vision impairment and blindness in the United States. As the baby-boomer generation ages, more Americans than ever are being affected by age-related eye diseases such as macular degeneration, cataract, diabetic eye disease and glaucoma.
Iowa currently has the second highest rate in the nation when it comes to vision impairment and blindness. Nearly 16,000 Iowans over the age of 40 are blind.*
Sadly, the number of people with age-related eye disease and the vision impairment that results is expected to double within the next three decades. Yet, it is estimated that half of all blindness could be prevented. New technology and drug therapies have made treating these age-related diseases more successful. However, the cost associated with these treatment many times put them out of reach for uninsured or underinsured individuals.
* 2002 Prevent Blindness America
The percentage of uninsured and underinsured Iowans that will be affected by vision impairment is ever increasing. It is estimated that more than one in every four people in Iowa under the age of 65 have no health insurance.* We must give them hope.
The Wolfe Foundation is determined to:
- Increase charitable contributions to impoverished children and adults in need of medical and surgical eye care.
- Invite more interested and compassionate donors to share in our mission.
- Seek opportunities to expand and leverage Foundation donations.
- Support education and research in ophthalmology.
Families USA, June 2004
How It Works
Wolfe Eye Clinic surgeons partner with the Foundation donating their surgical time and other professional services, thereby leveraging contributions to touch even more lives.
In addition to annual service and monetary contributions from Wolfe surgeons, the Wolfe Foundation is funded through the generous support of grateful patients and donors like you. Over 95 percent of your investment in the Foundation goes directly to our mission, with 75 percent used for patient care and 20 percent applied to education.