According to a survey presented at the virtual Prevent Blindness: Focus on Eye Health National Summit found trepidation among visually impaired persons amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
It has been recorded approximately 59% percent of respondents were congenitally visually impaired.
The most common concerns conveyed by respondants were –
- efficient and convenient access to COVID-19 testing,
- access to prescriptions, being hospitalized and being able to maintain a regular eye care regime,
- deteriorating eye health amid a pause in regular health appointments and difficulty in traversing environments without a human guide in a time of social distancing.
“We heard over and over again from participants who felt that, because of their visual impairment, they would not be a candidate for a ventilator if health providers had to choose because they would be devalued because they had a disability,”
Penny Rosenblum, PhD, director of research, American .
Globally the number of people of all ages visually impaired is estimated to be 285 million, of whom 39 million are blind.
People 50 years and older are 82% of all blind.
The major causes of visual impairment are uncorrected refractive errors (43%) and cataract (33%); the first cause of blindness is cataract (51%).
Visual impairment is a major global health issue: the preventable causes are as high as 80% of the total global burden.
Team of ITVI is pleased to create awareness regarding the major concerns of the visually impaired . It has been notified that a large number of visually impaired people are struggling with the inability to see their eye care professional during the lockdowns, but fortunately it is reassuring to know that many of them were able to adhere to their treatment regimens . We need to do better to ensure that the health care of those with visual impairments and other vulnerable populations is protected and people receive what they need in difficult times.
By-Fiona Catherine Jerry