Prosthetic Assistance Grants

About the PAP Program

As the top destination online for OM-related information, OMF is inundated with requests from around the world for assistance with research, treatment and travel. We do our best to fulfill these requests, but we have for some time wished to have a more structured program for disbursing funds, first for patient travel through the TAG program, and now the Prosthetic Assistance Program (PAP) to assist individuals in need of an ocular prostheses.

An ocular prosthesis (also called an artificial eye or, often incorrectly, a glass eye) is a type of prosthesis that replaces an absent natural eye following an enucleation, evisceration, or orbital exenteration. The prosthesis fits over an orbital implant (typically a porous materials such as hydroxyapatite sutured in at the time of the eye removal) and under the eyelids. The prosthesis roughly takes the shape of a convex shell and sits over the implant like a curved shield; it's this shield that other people see.

Prostheses are typically made of medical grade plastic acrylic or, sometimes, cryolite glass. A variant of the ocular prosthesis is a very thin hard shell known as a scleral shell which can be worn over a damaged or eviscerated eye. Makers of these prosthetics are known as ocularists and, given the custom-fitted, hand-painted nature of today's better prostheses, patients often have trouble buying them, or at least buying ones that they find cosmetically suitable. Enter PAP.
OMF Prosthetic Assistance Program Overview (2014).pdf
click to download

The Awards

OMF has committed up to $10,000 per year for individuals with evidence of financial hardship to receive financial assistance for OM-related, doctor-prescribed ocular and facial prosthetics.

Anticipated awards are $1,000 - $2,500 per individual.

Selection Criteria

Applications for the PAP Awards will be evaluated solely on need.

Factors that will be weighed when evaluating each application include the unique financial situation of the applicant and their family, time since diagnosis, and specific nature of the professional recommendations surrounding prosthetic creation for the patient.

Apply for a PAP Award

Applying is easy. Simply click here and be taken to our online application form or download the application questionnaire and mail it to us or scan and email it. An OMF representative will be in touch shortly (usually 5-10 business days) to discuss next steps.

Along with the confidential questionnaire, applicants must submit evidence of income (proof of financial status and hardship) along with any supporting materials.
To download an application and mail it in, please click here.
Please email PAP@ocularmelanoma.org if you have any questions.