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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.