A new World Health Organization (WHO) guide on eye care was launched today at an event – Universal Health Coverage and Eye Care: Promoting Country Action – attended by government officials, WHO representatives and non-governmental organizations in the eye care sector.
The Eye Care in Health Systems: Guide for Action provides practical, step-by-step, guidance to support Member States in planning and implementing the recommendations of the World report on vision with the goal to provide integrated people-centred eye care services.
This new resource leads Member States through a four-step process: situation analysis; development of an eye care strategic plan and monitoring framework; development and implementation of an operational plan; and establishing and maintaining ongoing review processes.
Currently, more than 2 billion people are living with a vision impairment and of these, at least 1 billion people are needlessly living with poor vision due to lack of access to eye care services. This burden is not borne equally: 90 percent of people with vision impairment or blindness live in low- and middle-income countries. Often, all that is needed is a cost-effective intervention, such as a pair of spectacles or cataract surgery.
Implementing integrated people-centred eye care has the potential to improve millions of lives worldwide and produce huge benefits for the economy, gender equity, inclusion, education and the workplace.
The Guide links to other tools developed by WHO, through consultations with international experts, including:
(1) Eye Care Situation Analysis Tool (ECSAT)
(2) Eye Care Indicator Menu (ECIM)
(3) Package of Eye Care Interventions (PECI)
(4) Eye Care Competency Framework (ECCF)
Image on top: This photo was taken of a woman getting an eye exam during the Corona pandemic/OMAR ALGHUSHAIRI