COVID-19 Resource Center
COVID-19 Resource Center
Source/Disclosures
Source:

Rosenblum P. Future of vision treatment and research: Flatten inaccessibility. Presented at: Prevent Blindness Focus on Eye Health National Summit; July 15, 2020 (virtual meeting).

Disclosures: Healio/OSN could not confirm relevant financial disclosures at the time of publication.
July 17, 2020
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Visually impaired convey concerns in COVID-19 era

Source/Disclosures
Source:

Rosenblum P. Future of vision treatment and research: Flatten inaccessibility. Presented at: Prevent Blindness Focus on Eye Health National Summit; July 15, 2020 (virtual meeting).

Disclosures: Healio/OSN could not confirm relevant financial disclosures at the time of publication.
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A survey presented at the virtual Prevent Blindness: Focus on Eye Health National Summit found trepidation among visually impaired persons amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Flatten Inaccessibility Survey recorded responses from 1,921 visually impaired persons nationwide. Fifty-nine percent of respondents were congenitally visually impaired.

The survey included 171 questions across 11 sections and recorded quantitative and qualitative responses.

Access to COVID-19 testing, access to prescriptions, being hospitalized and being able to maintain a regular eye care regimen were among the survey respondents’ concerns.

“We heard over and over again from participants who felt that, because of their visual impairment, they would not be a candidate for a ventilator if health providers had to choose because they would be devalued because they had a disability,” Penny Rosenblum, PhD, director of research, American Foundation for the Blind, said.

Respondents were concerned about deteriorating eye health amid a pause in regular health appointments and difficulty in traversing environments without a human guide in a time of social distancing.

“We need to do better to ensure that the health care of those with visual impairments and other vulnerable populations is protected and people receive what they need in difficult times,” Rosenblum said.

The full survey is slated to be published on the American Foundation for the Blind’s website.