As 2014 comes to a close and we look ahead at the year to come, I thought it would be a good opportunity to introduce myself to you as the new president of the Vision Impact Institute. In the past few months, I’ve worked closely with your outgoing president, Jean-Félix Biosse Duplan, diving deep into the mission of the Vision Impact Institute in order to emerge with a renewed strategy.
Since the birth of the VII almost two years ago, there have been many efforts to rally key stakeholders in the vision, research and public health communities to amplify the message of the socio-economic cost of Uncorrected Refractive Error. It is still surprising to us today how so few people, from the general public to key influencers within the public health and eye industries, are aware of how such a prevalent yet easily treatable eye condition is left uncorrected. Thus far, we have collected over 100 research studies on our website, with compelling evidence to help support our argument that eye health should be considered a priority of general health.
In fact, one of our major initiatives for 2015 will be to expand our scope to include the importance of Healthy Vision and the quality of life benefits of visual correction. While we will continue to collect and support existing data and research on the global and regional socio-economic effects of Uncorrected Refractive Error, we also want to emphasize the benefits of healthy vision. We’ve learned that good vision health is often taken for granted and simple, low cost measures can vastly improve quality of life for both children and seniors.
Another important initiative for 2015 will be to make sure this compelling evidence gets in the right hands of the government policy makers and influential advocates so that we can see results and a call to action. By giving vision a voice, we can help many people around the world live a better life through better sight.
I am excited to be joining the Vision Impact Institute and wish you all a wonderful holiday season and a happy, healthy new year.
President of the Vision Impact Institute