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Dear Readers,
Vision impairment and vision rehabilitation has been neglected for decades at all levels both at the community level and at institutional level. 1. Awareness on the nature of vision rehabilitation services and the impact of low vision services which improve the quality of life in the patients among eye care professionals. 2. Lack of trained or skilled optometrists and rehabilitation professionals in low vision care to provide low vision service. 3. Lack of low cost, cosmetically acceptable low vision devices like telescopes, and magnifiers. Though the above said barriers has been there for many years no action has been taken at policy makers level to improve the situation.

There are currently an estimated 180 million visually impaired persons globally of these 45 million are blind of whom approximately 20% have no perception of light. The 9 million persons require mobility training and other forms of rehabilitation. Out of the 171 million which comprises 135 million persons with low vision icd-10 and 36 million blind with residual vision an estimated 60% can be improved with surgical treatment. The remaining estimated 68 million persons require low vision care and are likely to benefit from such care.

More than 12,000 ophthalmologists are there in India and there are more than 6,000 qualified rehabilitation professionals registered with rehabilitation council of India. we do not know exactly the number of optometrists qualified at this point of time as there is no statutory body to recognize them. But the number of professionals aware of potential low vision services among the professionals mentioned above is very less.

The situation will improve only when a national movement on awareness creation of low vision services and the impact on improving the quality of life of patients should be known through different professional forums at ophthalmologist level, optometrist level and rehabilitations level. This is a multidisciplinary service and has multi dimensions in the delivery of service.

This e-resource journal on vision impairment is an attempt to improve the resources that are available on low vision services. Here you will find information on the different types of rehabilitation services community based and institution based. Training materials on low vision, types of low vision devices and their available areas and useful web links which will lead to exhaustive bank of information on Vision rehabilitation.

Happy reading!

Regards,

Vision 2020 e-resource team
The Issue Features...
Vision Rehabilitation
Vol. 6 No. 8 August 2009
•   Institution Based
  » Institutions For Rehabilatation
  » Hospital
•   CBR
  » Community Participation
  »Reaching The Un Reached
•   Training
  » Training Materials
  » Institutions
•   Low Vision Devices
•   Websites
•   Featured Organisation
•   Talk to Us

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Vision rehabilitation is done basically at three levels. They are Institutions, Hospitals at large and individuals who act as consultants. Here we have resources and articles covering the aspects of the same.
INSTITUTIONS FOR REHABILITATION
Developing countries need to rely on the expertise of the international NGOs, which have successfully introduced and guided the implementation of various programmes on primary eye care, community-based rehabilitation and prevention of blindness. Nongovernmental organizations such as the Christoffel Blindenmission, the UK Royal National Institute for the Blind, the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, Helen Keller International, the Perkins School for the Blind, ONCE and Sight Savers have been thedriving force behind many programmes. These organizations should now focus their efforts more on the field of low vision.
The possible areas in which these organizations can help are:
  • Development of a cadre of low-vision therapists
  • widespread use of low-vision devices
  • Low-vision research
  • Awareness programmes
  • Support to countries which are in the process of implementing low-vision programmes.

  • COMMUNITY BASED REHABILITATION AND PREVENTION OF BLINDNESS IN SOUTH WEST UGANDA

  • This article describes in detail the process, methods and the analysis of the Community Based Rehabilitation programme for the Prevention of Blindness in Uganda. It also describes in detail about the CBR statistics a result of the CBR Programme.

  • COMMUNITY BASED REHABILITATION IN INDIA: WHO CONTRIBUTES TO CBR PROGRAMMES FOR THE VISUALLY IMPAIRED?

  • This article describes in detail about the methods and the steps that have to be followed in rehabilitating the community for Visual impairment.

  • VISION REHABILIATION – AN EVIDENCE BASED REVIEW

  • This article acts as a guide for Vision rehabilitation - an evidence based review. It also describes in detail about the Low vision, how the literature study can be conducted, its types for analyzing the current strategy and the prevalence of Low vision. It also describes in detail the different source of databases that can be used while conducing the literature review, how to access and analyze the rate the prevalence statistics.

  • ACQUIRED MONOCULAR VISION REHABILITATION PROGRAM

  • This article illustrates the development, need, and benefits of an Acquired Monocular Vision Rehabilitation evaluation and training program. This proposed program will facilitate the organization of vision rehabilitation with eye care professionals and social caseworkers to help patients cope with, as well as accept, and recognize obstacles they will face in transitioning suddenly to monocular vision.

  • LOW VISION REHABILITATION - HELPING YOU LIVE INDEPENDENTLY




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    Nationally and internationally, low-vision service delivery systems reflect a wide spectrum of options. Low-vision services are available in hospitals, community clinics, colleges of optometry, centres for the blind and the visually impaired, health centres, educational facilities, preschool programmes and in the homes of those affected. Services of varying quality and scope are often dependent upon the initiative of low-vision advocates (a parent, a teacher or an ophthalmologist). In some instances, they receive the support of local and/or central government or large nongovernmental organizations (NGOs)

  • THE LOW VISION DOCTOR'S REHABILITATION PLAN

  • The history, physical examination, functional assessments of vision, and evaluation of low vision aids come together with the patient's goals and diagnoses to allow for the development of a rehabilitation plan. It becomes the initial blueprint for low vision rehabilitation for considering various areas which are mentioned in this link.

  • LOW VISION REHABILITATION: A PRACTICAL GUIDE FOR OCCUPATIONAL THERAPISTS

  • This chapter presented an overview of the seven-step sequential treatment plan for vision rehabilitation as well as a review of the research on the effectiveness of low vision rehabilitation. There is an urgent need for additional research to study the importance and effectiveness of occupational therapy intervention for low vision impairment. This need should be a priority for the profession of occupational therapy

  • REHABILITATION SERVICES

  • This article talks about various Rehabilitation Services that offers a variety of programs that teach blind, vision-impaired, and deaf-blind clients how to use their other senses, special equipment, and new techniques to live independently.

  • PRINCIPLES OF MODERN LOW VISION REHABILITATION

  • The intent of this paper is to outline the principles and details of a modern low vision rehabilitation service.

  • LOW VISION REHABILITATION: UPDATE FOR EYE CARE PROVIDER

  • This PowerPoint covers Low vision tactics for eye care providers.

  • GUIDELINES FOR SETTING UP A LOW VISION PROGRAMME FOR CHILDREN

  • This article discusses ten steps in developing a low vision programme for children.

  • LOW VISION AND REHABILITATION FOR OLDER PEOPLE: INTEGRATING SERVICES INTO THE HEALTH CARE SYSTEM

  • This article talks about lack of skills relevant to the care and rehabilitation of older people with low vision. And also shows how different people in the health system can provide different components of low vision services.

  • ESTABLISHING LOW VISION SERVICES AT SECONDARY LEVEL


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COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION
In terms of the Global Initiative for the Elimination of Avoidable Blindness, a strong case must be made for the further promotion and acceptance of active community involvement in eye care service development, implementation and evaluation. Active community participation has a vital contribution to make towards reducing the magnitude of preventable blindness caused by the five major causes of blindness particularly identified in the Global Initiative - cataract, trachoma, onchocerciasis, childhood blindness (especially due to vitamin A deficiency) and refractive errors and low vision.

  • LIFE WITH LOWVISION

  • This brochure provides basic, easy-to-read information on Low Vision and the various Low Vision Aids now available to facilitate maximum utilization of remaining vision.

  • MEASURING OUTCOMES OF VISION REHABILITATION WITH THE VETERANS AFFAIRS LOW VISION VISUAL FUNCTIONING QUESTIONNAIRE

  • The purpose of this study is to evaluate the sensitivity to change, in patients who undergo vision rehabilitation, of the Veteran Affairs (VA) Low Vision Visual Functioning Questionnaire (LV VFQ-48), which was designed to measure the difficulty visually impaired persons have in performing daily activities and to evaluate vision rehabilitation outcomes.

  • COMMUNITY BASED CASE-FINDING AND REHABILITATION: DETECTION OF CATARACT PATIENTS AND POST-OPERATIVE FOLLOW-UP

  • This article discuss the recommendations that are important for all those concerned with restoring sight to cataract patients and thus with getting these patients to attend an eye hospital.

  • OPTICAL SERVICES FOR VISUALLY IMPAIRED CHILDREN

  • This article discusses in detail about the five stages in the management of children with low vision.



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    In all developing countries, the commonest way to reach the public is through the media. Newspapers are widely available and are read by many people; furthermore, television is readily available. In developing countries, on average over 50% of the population is illiterate and therefore cannot be reached through newspapers. Where people are literate in the developing countries, innovative ways of increasing public awareness have been tried and found to be very successful, e.g. posters placed on the backs of the buses along with simple caricatures to increase the understanding of the man in the street. In countries where illiteracy is very high, the most suitable choice is the radio. Religious leaders, especially priests in churches and imams in mosques should be recruited to help as much as possible. Since the majority of developing countries are agrarian-based, and therefore most of the population are rural dwellers, it is important to ensure this sector is reached.

  • COMMUNITY BASED REHABILITATION: AN INTRODUCTION

  • This article gives a brief about the community Rehabilitation programme. It also briefs about the community projects, organizations that help in the projects for rehabilitating the community from visual impairment.

  • LOW VISION REHABILITATION

  • This article covers some Low Vision Rehabilitation Activities.

  • PROVIDING CARE FOR CHILDREN WITH LOW VISION


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TRAINING MATERIALS
Vision Rehabilitation is a comprehensive training and counselling process that attempts to help both blind and visually impaired persons to develop skills and use strategies that can assist them in their efforts to live their lives with independence and dignity.



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Low vision cannot be improved by more traditional methods (i.e., the use of eyeglasses, contact lenses, etc.) persons with low vision often rely on the use of a number of different instruments, called low vision devices, and tailored equipment for improved vision. Low vision devices, categorized as either optical or non-optical, help to improve visual ability for millions of people everyday.



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This section contains various websites which provide useful resources related to Low vision and rehabilitation.



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Lions Vision Research and rehabilitation center
http://www.lowvisionproject.org

This site describes collaborative research and development projects that involve the Lions Vision Research and Rehabilitation Center at the Johns Hopkins Wilmer Eye Institute. This site also is the gateway to the Low Vision Rehabilitation Network (LVRN). Weinvite you to join the LVRN so that you can follow progress and participate in collaborative projects. You can read descriptionsof the projects by clicking on the links in the menu bar above. To join the LVRN, click on the link in the left-hand panel and fill out the enrollment form. Under "How to Use This Site" in the menu bar above, you can find responses to a list of frequently asked questions.

Membership in LVRN is free and open to low vision rehabilitation practitioners, researchers, students, educators, administrators, policy-makers, business people, and anyone else who is interested in advances in the field of low vision rehabilitation.



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You can also refer your friends to register with the innovative resources. Send in your friend's e-mail id to us at eyesite@aravind.org with the subject line Register my friend's id!

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Vision 2020 e-resource team,
Lions Aravind Institute of Community Ophthalmology,
1, Annanagar, Madurai - 625 020,
Tamil Nadu, India,
E-mail:eyesite@aravind.org
Phone: 91-452-2537580

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