‘Eye Care Everywhere’ is the theme for World Sight Day, Thursday, 11th October 2018.World sight day is celebrated around the globe, the day aims to raise awareness of blindness and vision impairment, as well as ways to help people with these conditions.
The event is organized by vision 2020, the global initiative for the elimination of avoidable blindness. It was formed by the World Health Organization and the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness to promote everyone’s “right to sight.”
World Sight Day is an advocacy and communications call to action from the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) to promote universal access to vision health care. IAPB strives to maximize the impact of the work of their members through education and comprehensive eye health system development in countries where access to eye health care is limited or nearly non-existent.
Based on 2015 data, IAPB reports that within a world population of approximately 7.3 billion, 253 million people are blind or visually impaired. Fifty-five percent of those are women, and 89% live in low- and middle-income countries. Another 1.1 billion people have near vision impairment because they don’t have eyeglasses. Even more startling is the finding that more than 75% of cases of vision impairment are avoidable.
The good news is that, largely through the efforts of IAPB members, the prevalence of vision impairment has dropped from 4.58% in 1990 to 3.38% in 2015. If that doesn’t seem like much, that 1.2% drop means about 30 million more people can see! But that’s not enough. IAPB’s current goal is a 25% reduction in avoidable vision impairment by 2019 over 2010 levels.
Achieving that goal would improve vision for more than 58 million people.
How can we help? Get the word out.