Two to Seven Years – Forward Together

Man reading newspaper with magnifying

by Steve BakerSteve Baker
President, Eyefinity

I want to share with you an alarming statistic about low vision patients. From our research, it takes patients two to seven years to adapt to a low vision diagnosis. Dr. Hopkins, a Low Vision OD on the faculty at the Ohio State University College of Optometry, explains why:

“…often, it isn’t until after that initial encounter that a patient accepts that there are no magic glasses; that they have to work with the eyes they have and are ready to make a plan to move forward.”

This learning has motivated everyone at VSP and Eyefinity to find new ways to help doctors and patients address the unique needs associated with a low vision diagnosis.

Today is World Sight Day, a special opportunity for the optometric industry and the general public to come together and discuss key vision issues, namely preventable blindness. I encourage you to follow the conversation on social media with the hashtags #WSD2017, #WorldSightDay, and #ForwardTogether. Eyefinity’s leap into the field of low vision is part of a collaboration with VSP’s innovation lab, The Shop. The collaboration aims to address low vision challenges in a variety of ways, from creating infrastructure to hire qualified candidates at VSP who are visually impaired, to designing eyewear to meet the needs of blind and low vision patients by enhancing their other senses.

In the next few months, Eyefinity will launch trials in Ohio and California of a Low Vision and Blindness Resource Engine designed by Eyefinity and VSP Global. The tool works by asking patients a few questions regarding their difficulty with certain tasks. As patients click the check-boxes, the engine generates a personalized database of resources that can help, such as specialty doctors and non-profit organizations. These initial tests will help us determine what the beta version will need to include in order to be successful for doctors and patients alike. This is a really exciting opportunity. We estimate that this new resource could shorten two to seven years to two to seven months.

Please stay tuned for more information by subscribing to the Eyefinity Blog and following us on social media. #ForwardTogether.

Read Steve’s previous post here.

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