Volunteer program offering free eye exams and glasses for public school students

A volunteer program of the University of Nebraska Medical Center’s College of Public Health has been performing free eye exams and providing free glasses to children from Central Park Elementary School in Omaha from a OneSight Vision Van parked out front. The eye exams out of this van include eye charts to check visual acuity and devices to measure internal eye fluid pressure and needed correction. The students that participated in this eye exam were fitted free prescription glasses that were crafted in the back of the van.

This operation is expected to service over 650 students from eight schools in Omaha, and is the project of the Child Vision Collaborative, which is a team effort of 18 local community organizations, nonprofits, and other initiatives by Building Healthy Futures; an independent nonprofit organization. The eye exam operation is meant to help improve the future health of underprivileged children in the community. Vision care represents a significant gap in health care for children, and younger children may not recognize that they have a vision problem that needs corrective attention. These free exams for kids are crucial in determining their quality of vision, and to provide free corrective glasses to children whose families would not otherwise be able to afford prescription glasses.

Many eye issues, such as lazy eye, are reversible if diagnosed and treated promptly. Early detection is crucial, especially in children, to be able to pinpoint the issue and reverse it, or treat it as soon as possible in order to improve the child’s quality of life and prolong their future health. Poor vision can affect brain development and can result in permanent vision loss. Without proper diagnoses and treatment, children’s eye health can go overlooked and unnoticed, kids may experience issues with hand-eye coordination and motor skills, and even have issues with their school work. This eye exam operation gives children of all kinds the chance to get their vision checked by professionals, and if needed, get fitted with the proper corrective glasses.

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