Vision equity in New York City: Cross-sector collaboration for targeted service expansion and outcome monitoring in the school-based vision screening program
The New York City (NYC) Office of School Health Vision Program (SHVP) screens over 205,000 children annually for vision deficits. Interventions to improve follow-up rates (currently at 41%) and long-term compliance, especially in vulnerable populations have traditionally been limited by agency capacity. Recent program expansions and cross-sector partnerships allow for screening and subsequent referral & treatment of an additional 60,000 students in 130 highest-need schools.
A multi-agency, mayoral initiative including NYC’s Education Department and SHVP created the conditions to support successful partnerships designed to enhance vision programming, improve outcomes, and decrease vision health disparities. City government contributed resources and public attention by including expanded vision services as key to the Mayor’s Community School Initiative. A public-private partnership with Warby Parker provided access to prescription glasses for students in participating high-need schools. Collaboration with Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health enabled expanded use of data-driven program monitoring and process evaluation.
Evaluation of the impact of the collaboration on the publicly funded SHVP projects a follow-up compliance rate of over 90% in participating schools. Through partnerships, NYC School Vision Program will widen its scope to 300,000 students city-wide, while monitoring and measuring the effects of coordinated service to selected Pre-K to 12thgrade high-need students.
When the conditions are created to facilitate cross-sector partnerships, expansions of publicly-funded school-based vision programs may have greater ability to achieve increased equity and decreased disparity in childhood vision health.
Learning Areas:Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Other professions or practice related to public health
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Describe one example of how a partnership with a Health Department VIsion Program can promote decreased disparities in vision health among children in New York City schools. Describe the conditions that support partnerships to enhance a targeted, full-service vision program expansion
Keyword(s): Vision Care, School-Based Health
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a School Physician for the New York City Office of School Health as well as an Assistant Professor teaching the School Health course at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. Community partnerships in school health and practical field work for MPH students are my specialty. I have supervised the public health interns supporting the evaluation efforts of the School Health Vision Program. I am involved in training initiatives around School 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.