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Celebrating Low Vision Awareness Month at Vision-Aid 

What is Low Vision? 

Low Vision is a condition characterized by significant vision loss that persists even with corrective measures like glasses or surgery. It poses challenges in daily activities, impacting independence and quality of life. 

The Importance of Low Vision Practice 

Low Vision Practice aims to optimize remaining vision through comprehensive evaluation, assistive devices, training, and counseling. It empowers individuals to perform tasks independently, reducing dependence on others. 

Global Impact of Low Vision 

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), approximately 285 million people worldwide suffer from visual impairment. Among them, 246 million have low vision. However, only a small fraction has access to adequate low vision care, highlighting the need for awareness and intervention. 

Vision-Aid’s Approach to Accessibility 

Vision-Aid believes that accessibility to low-vision care can be achieved through awareness campaigns and proper screening, where individuals with low vision can be identified and provided with appropriate management. February marks Low Vision Awareness Month, during which a multitude of activities were conducted, and upcoming activities are planned to further this goal. 

Recent Activity: Low Vision Assessment Camp at Presidency College, Chennai 

 
Vision-Aid, in collaboration with Sankara Nethralaya and Help the Blind Foundation (HTBF), organized a Low Vision assessment camp for 26 college students on Feb 19, 2024, at Presidency College, Chennai. The entire day was dedicated to screening, involving a comprehensive low vision assessment comprising various clinical tests, including trials of different Low Vision Devices. Counseling was provided regarding the students’ ocular conditions and prognosis. Seventy-five percent of the students stand to benefit from assistive devices and aids, including spectacles, vision-enhancing devices, and glare control devices. Many students were referred to Sankara Nethralaya for detailed management of their ocular conditions, skill development, and computer training. 

Vision-Aid – Voluntary Health Services (VHS) Resource Center Screening Activity 

Recently, a screening activity was conducted by the Vision-Aid-VHS Resource Center, in collaboration with the Banyan-Adaikalam Foundation for the mental illness in Chennai. A total of 100 adults were assessed during this screening. The objective was to help patients overcome their vision difficulties through the provision of appropriate spectacles. 

Vision-Aid Advocating Best Practices: 

A lecture on the topic “Thinking beyond Assistive Devices: Unveiling the Power of Timely Screening and Referral in Low-Vision and Rehabilitative Care for the Visually Impaired” was delivered by Devi Udayakumar, Head of Low Vision Rehabilitation Programs at Vision-Aid. It was conducted on an online platform during Low Vision Awareness Month on February 22nd, 2024, Thursday by India Vision Institute (IVI). The participants were staff members of IVI from various regions across India, and they engaged in various vision screenings, management, and referrals. The focus of this lecture was to provide guidance to optometrists on Primary Low Vision Care, dispense spectacles, and educate and counsel on various aspects of low vision care. The staff joined from Chennai, Hyderabad, Salem, Namakkal, Delhi, and Bangalore. 

Positive feedback was received from the team, stating that the session conducted was enlightening and helped in gaining a thorough knowledge of Low Vision care. 

 
Upcoming Activity of Vision-Aid resource center at Pune

A Continuous Medical Education (CME) is planned on Advancement in Low Vision Practice and awareness by Community Eye Care Foundation, Vision Aid- USA under the aegis of Maharashtra Ophthalmology Society (MOS) and Pune Ophthalmological Society (POS). It is scheduled on Saturday, March 2nd, 2024, in Pune where eminent speakers from Low vision care practice and Vision-Aid are going to share their experience in Low Vision Practice and Assistive devices. There is going to be a Panel discussion on Low Vision Practice with case discussions and a Hands-on session for assistive devices focusing on Smart Vision Glasses. 

Conclusion: 

In summary, Vision-Aid’s proactive efforts in enhancing accessibility to low vision care are evident through its collaborative screenings, informative lectures, and upcoming educational events. By providing comprehensive assessments, assistive devices, and counseling, Vision-Aid empowers individuals with low vision to lead more independent lives. Through ongoing partnerships and initiatives, Vision-Aid continues to champion best practices and raise awareness, ensuring that those in need receive the support they deserve. Together, with the dedication of its team and the support of communities, Vision-Aid remains committed to making a meaningful difference in the lives of individuals with low vision worldwide. 

Donate Now!

Please consider supporting our efforts. Please note that Paypal charges approx. 2.3% fees for all online transactions. We would be grateful if you can add this fee to the donation. Optionally, you can mail your donation, as a check to : Vision-Aid Inc, 8 Vine Brook Rd, Lexington, MA 02421. For questions, please email info@visionaid.org or call (781) 333 5252 and leave a message.
 
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