258859 Socioeconomic inequalities in people with visual impairment

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 : 11:10 AM - 11:30 AM

Laura Guisasola , Department of Optics and Optometry Technical Universiy of Catalunya, Co-Director Unesco Chair Visual Health and Development, Barcelona, Spain
Anna Rius , Department of Optics and Optometry Technical Universiy of Catalunya, Co-Director Unesco Chair Visual Health and Development, Barcelona, Spain
Ricard Tresserras , Departament de Salut, Generalitat de Catalunya, Direcció General de Regulació, Planificació i Recursos Sanitaris, Barcelona, Spain
Objective To analyze inequalities in income, education, and social class as social determinants of visual impairment in the population of Catalonia, Spain.

Methods Using a cross-sectional study population of those older than 15 years (7881 men and 8045 women) from data from the Health Survey of Catalonia (ESCA 2006), the prevalence of visual impairment was calculated and logistic regression models were used to calculate adjusted odds ratios (AOR) by age, income level, educational level and social class to a 95% CI.

Results 4.7% (4.4, 5.0) of the Catalonian population [women 5.3% (4.8, 5.8), men 4.1% (3.7, 4.5)] self-reported having visual impairment. The prevalence of visual impairment is higher among individuals who report an income level less than EUR3000/year (6.8% versus 3% for those earn more than EUR10000/yr) and higher in more disadvantaged social class(7.5% in subjects of Social Class V compared with 2.9% of Social Class I). The risk of visual impairment in uneducated women is 1.78 (1.022, 3.116) times greater than in women with university degrees.

Conclusions The worst self-reported visual impairment in the Catalonian population was found in women with lower educational attainment, lower income and social class. The study results provide for the first time visual health data for the population of Catalonia, and are under examination by the Catalonian authorities as reflection toward the incorporation of new health policies for the benefit of the most socially underprivileged. Documenting these inequalities permits the identification of barriers to most disadvantaged populations.

Learning Areas:
Chronic disease management and prevention

Learning Objectives:
Analyze whether an industrialized region of Southern Europe there are social inequalities in the distribution of visual impairment

Keywords: Vision Care, Epidemiology

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Director of the UNESCO Chair in Visual Health and Development at the Politecnical University of Catalonia, Spain. Diploma in Optics and Optometry. Technical University of Catalunya, Spain. Post-graduate degree in Applied Optics. Technical University of Catalunya, Spain. Diploma in International Cooperation for Development. Autonomous University of Barcelona. Master degree in Public Health. Pompeu Fabra University. Currently working toward her PhD in Visual Public Health.
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.