No-cost, comprehensive eye and vision assessments provided by InfantSEE(R) Program
CHARLESTON, W.Va., April 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Due to the overwhelming number of children with eye and vision problems across the United States, West Virginia optometrists are devoting appointments to no-cost, comprehensive eye and vision assessments for infants between six to 12 months of age through InfantSEE(R). InfantSEE(R), a public health program developed by Optometry's Charity(TM) - The AOA Foundation in partnership with The Vision Care Institute(TM), LLC a Johnson & Johnson company, was designed to provide professional eye care for infants nationwide at no-cost, regardless of family income or number of eligible children.
The InfantSEE(R) Weeks project is funded through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and by a direct appropriation sponsored by U.S. Senator Robert C. Byrd (D-W.Va.). A long-time advocate for advancing the health and well-being of all West Virginians, Sen. Byrd championed the InfantSEE(R) program after learning of the overwhelming number of children with eye and vision problems in the Mountain State and across America.
"Many parents of newborns do not know that the most dramatic development of a child's visual system occurs within the first year of life," said Sen. Robert C. Byrd (D-W.Va.). "And it is through early detection and treatment of potential problems that parents can help ensure poor vision and eye health does not severely affect their child's ability to learn and place them at a disadvantage in education and in life. That is why I have put my full support behind the InfantSEE(R) program and worked to secure federal resources to help our Mountain State optometrists, and their colleagues around the country, expand the scope and impact of this great program. I encourage all parents to take advantage of the InfantSEE(R) program and to make a lifetime of eye and vision health a top priority for the whole family."
"This free, early detection and prevention program is a great resource for West Virginia families, and I urge all parents to take advantage of the InfantSEE(R) Week for free comprehensive eye and vision assessments for infants," said Senator John D. (Jay) Rockefeller, IV (D-W.Va.) "I am a strong believer in making sure our children have access to quality, affordable care, and InfantSEE(R) is doing a great service by making this available at no cost to families."
Leading members of the U.S. House of Representatives delegation from West Virginia have also expressed their support for the InfantSEE(R) program. Reps. Alan Mollohan (D-W.Va.), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), and Nick J. Rahall, II (D-W.Va.) urged local parents to have their infant's eyes assessed during InfantSEE(R) Week.
To encourage parents to take advantage of the InfantSEE(R) program and to help protect infant vision and eye health, Governor Joe Manchin has officially declared Monday, May 4 through Friday, May 15 InfantSEE(R) Week in West Virginia.
"I am proud to be involved with InfantSEE(R) Week as part of West Virginia's commitment to children's health and wellness," said First Lady, Gayle Manchin. "I encourage parents to take advantage of this public health program to help protect their infants' vision and eye health."
One in 10 children are at risk from undiagnosed eye and vision problems, which, if undetected, could lead to permanent vision impairment, and in rare cases, life-threatening health risks. However, only 14 percent of children from infancy to age six have had a comprehensive eye assessment from an eye care professional. In West Virginia, great strides are being made to ensure that potential eye and vision problems are detected early. Infant eye assessments have been available in West Virginia since the InfantSEE(R) program launched in 2005.
"Many parents are surprised to learn that the first year of life is one of the most critical stages of a child's visual development," said Dr. Gary Veronneau, a West Virginia optometrist and InfantSEE(R) provider. "It's the ideal time to detect eye and vision problems before these conditions worsen or cause developmental delays."
The program launched in 2005 with support from former President Jimmy Carter, honorary national chair. Nearly 8,000 optometrists nationwide volunteer their time to provide assessments to babies in their communities. The majority of vision problems detected included retinoblastoma (eye cancer), severe hyperopia (farsightedness), myopia (nearsightedness), congenital glaucoma and congenital cataract.
"As a parent, one of my biggest concerns is making sure my child's development is on track," said Marsha Burke, local mother of Rebekah, now age 3. "When I learned about the InfantSEE(R) program, it was an obvious decision to take Rebekah for an assessment. Knowing her vision is healthy puts my mind at ease!"
To continue to improve infant eye assessment rates in West Virginia, parents can bring their infant in for a no-cost assessment at the VSP InfantSEE(R) Mobile Clinic stationed in towns across the state. Also, for those parents who can't make it to the VSP InfantSEE(R) Mobile Clinic, optometrists from around the state will be providing these no-cost InfantSEE(R) eye assessments from May 4 through 15 in their offices by appointment.
VSP InfantSEE(R) Mobile Clinic Schedule - Walk-ins accepted Monday, May 4 from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Charleston, W.Va. - FamilyCare: Big Lots Plaza on Patrick St., 116 Hills Plaza Tuesday, May 5 from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Beckley/Mt. Hope, W.Va. - Crossroads Mall: 2 Crossroads Mall Wednesday, May 6 from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Lewisburg, W.Va. - Robert Byrd Health Clinic: 400 N. Jefferson St. Thursday, May 7 from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Bluefield, W.Va. - Mercer Mall Friday, May 8 from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Logan, W.Va. - Wal-Mart: 77 Norman Morgan Blvd. Monday, May 11 from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Huntington, W.Va. - Pullman Square: 220 9th St. Tuesday, May 12 from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Parkersburg/Vienna, W.Va. - Grand Central Mall: 100 Grand Central Ave. Wednesday, May 13 from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Wheeling/Triadelphia, W.Va. - Cabela's: One Cabela Dr., Triadelphia, WV Thursday, May 14 from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Bridgeport, W.Va. - Bridgeport Conference Center: 300 Conference Center Way Friday, May 15 from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Fairmont, W.Va. - Middletown Mall: 2500 Fairmont Ave. Saturday, May 16 from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Martinsburg, W.Va. - Martinsburg Mall: 800 Foxcroft Ave. Participating Optometrist offering NO-COST InfantSEE(R) Assessments in Their Offices - Appointment Required Anmoore Dr. Cynthia Zwolensky 67 Casino Dr., Ste. 102 304-627-3937 Barboursville Dr. Glenn Bailey Dr. Melissa Leoni 6010 US Route 60 East 304-733-0809 Beckley Dr. Charles Field 701 S. Oakwood Ave. 304-253-3150 Dr. David Holliday Dr. Mark Holliday 1928 Harper Rd. 304-252-1299 Dr. Charles Waitkus 624 Neville St. 304-253-8822 Bluefield Dr. Frank Brittom 3101 Cumberland Rd. 304-325-3603 Dr. John Hendrix Dr. Donald Taylor 332 Worth St. 304-325-8685 Bridgeport Dr. J. William Barnes Dr. Gregory Groves Dr. Harry Murray, III 107 Doctors Dr. 304-842-6220 Charleston Dr. Kent Hall Dr. Jeffery Whittington Dr. Sandra Whittington 3840 Pennsylvania Ave. 304-342-0660 Clarksburg Dr. Jim Fick Dr. Craig Liebig 538 B Emily Dr. 304-566-7709 Elkins Dr. Edward Hyre 1500 Harrison Ave., Suite 2 304-636-9111 Fairmont Dr. Cheryl C. Van Horn 3 Hutchinson Dr. 304-366-3830 Dr. Martin Carpenter Dr. Phillip Wilmoth 709 Morgantown Ave. 304-366-4721 Dr. C.D. Laughlin Dr. J.K. Wade 405 Locust Ave. 304-366-2020 Huntington Dr. Chris Ratcliff Dr. William Ratcliff 919 Fifth Ave., Ste 100 304-523-4819 Hurricane Dr. James Herman 3709 Teays Valley Rd. 304-757-2533 Kenova Dr. Gregory Browning 912 Oak St. 304-453-4072 Lewisburg Dr. Nancy Collins 107 E Foster St. 304-645-7000 Logan Dr. Arabel Hatfield 315 White & Browning Bldg. 304-752-4694 Dr. Mason Edward White, II 113 LB and T Way 304-752-2020 Morgantown Dr. James Pasinski 1257 Pineview Dr. 304-599-7034 Moundsville Dr. John Myers 511 Fifth St. 304-845-1560 New Martinsville Dr. Neill Marshall 903 3rd Ave. South 304-455-4300 Dr. James Campbell 700 Kevin Dr., Ste. E 304-455-5861 Parkersburg Dr. Jerry Lantz 2905 Emerson Ave. 304-422-3662 Dr. Douglas Conrath Dr. Scott Lauer Dr. Vicki Lauer 402 Avery St. 304-422-1841 Princeton Dr. Scott Carpenter 1043 Stafford Dr. 304-487-2020 Dr. Christopher Hansen Dr. Bradley Lane 700 Oakvale Rd. 304-425-2444 Rainelle Dr. Gary Veronneau 1102 Main St. 304-438-8574 Ravenswood Dr. Ben Mize 706 Washington St. 304-273-2020 Ripley Dr. Howard Klapper 200 Academy Dr. 304-372-5981 St. Mary's Dr. Larry Carr 214 Washington St. 304-684-2491 Sistersville Dr. Rob Christen Dr. Richard Stender 624 Wells St. 304-652-2459 Spencer Dr. Brett Radow 149 Main St. 304-927-5112 South Charleston Dr. Travis Taylor Dr. Sarah Taylor 415 D St. 304-744-1303 Summersville Dr. Eddie Prendergast 651 Water St. 304-872-5678 Williamson Dr. Steven Wilson 126 W. Second Ave. 304-235-2020
InfantSEE(R) assessments are complementary to the routine well-care exams a baby receives from a pediatrician or family physician. Optometrists have the training to identify areas of risk that are critical to vision development and the skills to identify conditions that might not be detected in a routine pediatric wellness exam. In some cases, conditions may need to be monitored, immediately treated or referred to a pediatric eye specialist.
To learn more about InfantSEE(R), visit www.InfantSEE.org.
Stay up-to-date on the VSP InfantSEE(R) Mobile Clinic at:
InfantSEE(R) is a public health program managed by Optometry's Charity(TM) - The AOA Foundation. Designed to ensure that eye and vision care become an integral part of infant wellness and improve a child's quality of life, doctors of optometry provide one eye and vision assessment to infants free-of-charge regardless of socioeconomic status. For more information visit infantsee.org.
About the American Optometric Association
American Optometric Association doctors of optometry are highly qualified, trained doctors, on the frontline of eye health and vision care, who examine, diagnose, treat, and manage diseases and disorders of the eye. In addition to providing eye and vision care, optometrists play a major role in an individual's overall health and well-being by detecting systemic diseases. Doctors of optometry have the skills and training to provide more than two-thirds of all primary eye care in the United States. The American Optometric Association represents more than 36,000 doctors of optometry, optometry students and paraoptometric assistants and technicians in nearly 6,500 communities across the country. For more information, visit www.aoa.org.
About The Vision Care Institute
The Vision Care Institute of Johnson & Johnson Vision Care Inc. is an innovative educational resource created to prepare optometry students for a successful transition into the real world of delivering quality eye care, as well as to assist practicing Eye Care Professionals in the growth and development of their practice. The state-of-the-art facility gives participants a rare opportunity to gain first-hand experience with the latest in vision diagnostic and treatment technologies through hands-on contact lens instruction. Besides clinical training, participants also concentrate on communication skills. The curriculum, taught by leading eye care practitioners from around the country, gives participants the skills and confidence necessary to excel in today's professional practice. The Vision Care Institute has hosted students from all 19 of the schools and colleges of optometry throughout North America at its headquarters in Jacksonville, Florida.
About the VSP Family of Companies
VSP(R)'s family of companies includes the largest not-for-profit vision benefits and services company in the United States with 55 million members; VSP Labs, industry leaders in new technologies, production processes, service and logistics; Marchon(R) Eyewear Inc., one of the world's largest manufacturers, designers and distributors of quality fashion and technologically-advanced eyewear and sunwear, distributing its products to more than 100,000 customer locations in more than 100 countries; Eyefinity(R)/Officemate(R) which offer innovative solutions and the premier management software and technology to improve overall practice management and the patient experience.
Since 1997, VSP has provided more than 510,000 low-income, uninsured children with free eyecare. Through relationships with the American Diabetes Association, Prevent Blindness America and the Center for Health Transformation, VSP promotes the importance of annual eye exams for maintaining eye health and overall wellness.
Contact: Julie Mahoney Madonna Duncan American Optometric Association Hill & Knowlton (314) 991-4100 x4176 (312) 255-3143 JMMahoney@aoa.org firstname.lastname@example.org
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