A New School-Based Program to Provide Eyeglasses: Childsight
Louis Pizzarello, Meredith Tilp, Lorraine Tiezzi, Roger Vaugln, and James McCarthy
Journal of American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus
The objective of this study is to address the unmet need for glasses encountered in an urban school setting by developing and implementing a school-based, cost-effective program that provides appropriate spectacle correction to needy children.
A total of 5851 students 9 to 15 years of age in 4 middle schools in northern Manhattan were screened for vision. Those with vision worse than 20/40 were examined, given glasses if appropriate, or referred for additional evaluation.
Of the 5851 children screened, 1614 (28%) had a failing result, with visual acuity less than 20/40
in the worse eye. Of this group, 1082 were given glasses that were assembled at the school within 1 hour of testing.
Ten percent of the group that required glasses already had them, and the remaining were referred for a complete ophthalmic examination that was completed in 58 cases. Only 14 of these had vision loss unrelated to refractive error.
The program successfully treated 88.3% of the children within the school who needed glasses.
Given that only 10% of children who needed glasses had them, it indicates a huge need to provide glasses to at least a million children in this age group in the United States.