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New NIH resources help growing number of Americans with vision loss
Date:2/1/2013

s with low vision. A low vision specialist can develop a rehabilitation plan that identifies strategies and assistive devices appropriate for a person's particular needs, which vary depending on the person's age and the source and severity of vision loss. As described in the booklet and videos, vision rehabilitation services include:

  • training to use magnifying and adaptive devices
  • learning new daily living skills to remain safe and live independently
  • developing strategies to navigate inside and outside the home
  • providing resources and support to help patients with vision loss

"A vision rehabilitation plan helps people reach their true visual potential when nothing more can be done from a medical or surgical standpoint," said Mark Wilkinson, O.D., a low vision specialist at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics and a NEHEP planning committee member. "Vision rehabilitation can make a world of difference to a person adjusting to vision loss and should be considered part of the continuum of care. I urge health professionals to help their patients with low vision seek vision rehabilitation services."

The NEI is committed to finding new ways to improve the lives of people living with visual impairment. The NEI currently dedicates more than $24 million to research projects aimed at low vision. Projects include learning how the brain adapts to vision loss, strategies to improve vision rehabilitation, and the development of new technologies to help people with low vision read, shop, and find their way in unfamiliar places.

Statistics on low vision are taken from the report, 2012 Fifth Edition of Vision Problems in the U.S., available on the NEI website at http://www.nei.nih.gov/eyedata. The new NEI booklet and videos along with other resources for people with low vision can be viewed and downloaded at

Contact: NEI News
neinews@nei.nih.gov
301-496-5248
NIH/National Eye Institute
Source:Eurekalert

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