239979 Access to vision health care and education for students:A school-based and community health program initiative

Wednesday, November 2, 2011: 10:50 AM

Raenita C. Glover, MPH , School-Based and Community Health Program, Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, MI
Background: The Vision Program operates at 15 school sites across the Metropolitan Detroit area providing pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade students with eye exams, glasses and eye health education. Purpose: Our goal is to create access to professional eye health care services, while educating students on the importance of eye health care and retention of glasses. Significance: Uncorrected vision problems affect learning ability and overall academic success. Students are better positioned for academic success with prescribed glasses. Methods: The program receives vision services from a contracted optical provider that provides a licensed optometrist and an optical assistant to perform eye exams. We conducted eye health education using pre- and post- test questionnaires to measure increase in knowledge after viewing age appropriate DVDs addressing the importance of eye care. Glasses retention checks and surveys are administered 6-8 weeks after initial eye exam date. Results: Of the current 3291 students examined, approximately 50% (1634) of them required prescribed glasses. Students pre- and post- tested improved overall health education scores on average by 22% and 24% for grades 3-8 and 9-12 respectively. Glasses retention rate is currently 31% in grades K-8 (data for grades 9-12 currently not available). Conclusions: Our results currently show increases in health education scores and a greater need for glasses retention efforts. By removing barriers such as, transportation, financial limitations and time to receive professional eye health care, the vision program operates to improve and increase the number of students receiving eye exams while providing resources to combat these impediments.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Program planning

Learning Objectives:
Upon completion of this presentation, participants will be able to: a. Identify the outcomes of vision exams, health education and glasses retention performed in multiple School-Based & Community Health (SBCH) centers; b. Discuss the results of the vision program methods to integrate vision services in other school-based or community health centers; c. Design and plan for sustainable vision programs to deliver eye health care to students in undeserved urban areas.

Keywords: School-Based Programs, Vision Care

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the vision program coordinator for the Henry Ford Health System School-Based and Community Health Program. I have also implemented the program's educational services and performed program evaluation and data analysis for the vision program.
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.