187725 Measuring Access to Eye Care: A Public Health Perspective

Tuesday, October 28, 2008: 10:48 AM

Xinzhi Zhang, MD, PhD , Vision Health Initiative, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA
Ronald Andersen, PhD , Box 951772, UCLA School of Public Health, Los Angeles, CA
Jinan B. Saaddine, MD, MPH , Vision Health Initiative, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA
Gloria L.A. Beckles, MD, MSc , Division of Diabetes Translation, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA
Michael R. Duenas, OD , Vision Health Initiative, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA
Paul Lee, MD, JD , Wadsworth Bldg, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC
Objective: To examine the different dimensions of access to eye care from a public health perspective.

Methods: We substantively review the theoretical and empirical literature on access to eye care and summarize the major considerations in measuring access to eye care using a modified behavioral framework.

Results: We found that progress has been made, but some gaps still remain in measuring access to eye care. Most studies have focused on individual characteristics and use of eye care services. Only a very few studies have touched on contextual characteristics, such as demographic make-up of the area in which the patient lives, and their impact on the use of eye care services. Few studies have explored the linkage between the use of eye care services and outcomes or between the use of such services and patient satisfaction.

Conclusions: To address a variety of demands from patients, providers, and policy makers, it is necessary to account for potential access and realized access measures. We need to adopt new methods in assessing the relationship between contextual characteristics and use of eye care services. Moreover, we need to better understand patients' preferences and their relationship with utilization and health outcomes.

Learning Objectives:
Our study will help participants by Demonstrating the need to improve vision and eye health in the U.S. Providing evidence for public health policy and decision making in achieving a population with healthy vision

Keywords: Access to Health Care, Vision Care

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Scientific work
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.