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Americans Place High Value on Eyesight, Yet Many Still Lack Vision Coverage
Date:10/8/2008

y have real concerns about paying for vision care. Nearly 40 percent fear they cannot afford adequate treatment. Sixty-three percent say they would sign up for vision care coverage if given the opportunity even if it meant paying a small amount each month.

With 11 million Americans living with an uncorrected vision problem, a number expected to rise as the population ages, the expense to businesses can also be severe. According to the report, the annual financial burden of major adult vision disorders exceeds $35 billion to the U.S. economy, including an estimated $8 billion in lost productivity.

"Uncorrected vision problems are very costly to employers, and it is important for them to recognize that vision health coverage not only maintains a healthy workforce, but has a positive impact on their bottom line," said Greene. For example, studies show that employers gain as much as $7 for every $1 spent on vision coverage.

As with many other benefits, employers are increasingly forced to pass along some of the cost of providing health insurance to employees. Offering vision coverage can help employers enhance their benefits package at a relatively low cost. Such coverage typically costs one-tenth that of medical benefits, and is often utilized more by employees than medical plans.

The Vision Council urges employees to take an active part in maintaining healthy vision by scheduling regular eye exams. Many vision-threatening conditions have no early warning signs; eye exams can also detect other serious health problems including diabetes and glaucoma.

"The good news is that there is greater awareness among employers and employees about the importance of healthy vision," said Greene. "However we still have a long way to meet the vision health needs that are valued greatly by Americans."

Dedicated to enhancing life through better vision, The Vision Council represents the manufacturers and suppliers of the optical industry. We provi
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SOURCE The Vision Council
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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