October is World Blindness Awareness Month
National Non-Profit Works to Eliminate Vision Loss in US by Arming Patients with Reliable Eye Health Information
October 10, 2007 - SAN FRANCISCO – According to the World Health Organization, nearly 180 million people in the world suffer from blindness or visual impairment. In observance of World Blindness Awareness Month in October, EyeCare America – a public service program of the Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology — wants to remind everyone that unnecessary vision loss could largely be prevented if patients had access to sight-saving information and resources. Additionally, October 11th is World Sight Day, a health observation that is recognized by health organizations around the globe.
In honor of World Blindness Awareness Month taking place in October, EyeCare America encourages everyone to become more empowered about their eye health by logging on to its newly designed website at www.eyecareamerica.org.
According to a 2005 study by Neilson/Net Ratings, a global leader in media and market research, the internet is considered the most trusted source for health information after physicians. As the number of Americans seeking health care information on the Internet grows, EyeCare America plans to match that trend by providing website visitors centralized vision care information, written in language that is clear and easy for them to understand.
The interactive website is part of EyeCare America’s educational mission to empower consumers with reliable educational information. Visitors can log on to find accurate and up-to-date eye care information, learn more about the leading causes of blindness such as glaucoma or macular degeneration, locate an eye doctor in their area and even share important health topics with family and friends through a convenient email forward function.
Other easy-to-use functions include online tools such as a vision simulator, which allows users to see how vision would be affected from common eye diseases such as cataracts and glaucoma. Informative videos, created by the American Academy of Ophthalmology, are an added feature on the site and will provide consumers with a complete interactive experience.
The site was designed keeping in mind those who suffer from low-vision. Innovative features on the website allow users to increase the type size up to three sizes; contrast the content into both light on dark or dark on light and finally, the layout of the web pages can be changed to single -column viewing to accommodate low-vision reading aids.
About EyeCare America
Established in 1985, EyeCare America, the public service program of the Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, is committed to the preservation of sight, accomplishing its mission through public service and education. EyeCare America provides eye care services to the medically underserved and for those at increased risk for eye disease through its corps of 7,200 volunteer ophthalmologists dedicated to serving their communities. More than 90 percent of the care made available is provided at no out-of-pocket cost to the patients. EyeCare America includes programs for seniors, children, glaucoma, diabetes, and AMD, and is the largest program of its kind in American medicine. Since its inception, EyeCare America has helped more than 860,000 people. EyeCare America is a non-profit program whose success is made possible through charitable contributions from individuals, foundations and corporations. More information can be found at: