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APolitical

FSO gives parents tools to screen kids for vision problems

Eye charts available for download.

The Florida Society of Ophthalmology (FSO) is sharing resources for parents and guardians to perform basic, at-home vision screenings for children.

Using guidelines from the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), FSO is encouraging parents to screen their children for vision issues that are treatable, or even preventable, if caught early.

Still, FSO said only about 20% of preschool-age children get vision screenings.

One issue is Amblyopia, better known as lazy eye. Amblyopia is the leading cause of preventable yet permanent vision loss in children in the U.S.

Earlier this year, the Florida Senate officially designated August 2020 as “Amblyopia Awareness Month” to educate Florida parents on the importance of vision screening at an early age.

“We understand that during a global pandemic like COVID-19, there have been some families who have not been able to even think about things like eye exams for themselves or their children,” said FSO president Darby D. Miller.

“By sharing resources for basic, at-home testing, parents and guardians who are at home with their families and children this summer can use these guidelines to better prepare and educate themselves as they schedule their visits to a qualified ophthalmologist or pediatrician.”

To facilitate screenings, FSO has posted in-depth instructions and eye charts on its website. The materials may also be used to screen adults and determine whether a follow-up visit with an ophthalmologist is necessary.

Resources can be found at MDEye.org/HomeVision.

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