Businesses across America are discovering that offering corporate vision screenings to their workers is smart business. A comprehensive vision screening is a cost-effective means of early disease detection, discovering previously undiagnosed eye and systemic diseases. Problems can be treated and controlled before disease progression occurs—and before treatment costs escalate requiring employers to pay more in medical insurance claims.
A recent report estimates the economic burden of eye disease in the U.S. at $51.4 billion annually. For example, three million Americans aged 40 and older have glaucoma, a disease causing blindness with no symptoms in its early stages, and do not even know it.
The Baby Boom Generation consists of nearly 80 million people born between 1946 and 1964. They are living longer, more active lives than their parents did. An increasing number are also extending their time in the workforce to augment the correspondingly bigger nest egg they’ll need for retirement. This generation presents a challenge for employers, not only because of its sheer size. While Boomers are living longer than their parents, they’re not necessarily healthier. Thirty-three percent are obese, contributing to an epidemic of Type-2 diabetes—and with it, diabetic retinopathy. Add glaucoma, macular degeneration and cataracts to the list of eye diseases relating to aging, and you have millions of American workers with uncorrected vision problems, putting them at risk for permanent vision loss if left untreated.
A comprehensive eye screening can not only discover the existence of eye disease, but also reveal clues to overall health before symptoms appear elsewhere in the body. It can help identify a wide range of systemic disorders, including high blood pressure, diabetes and multiple sclerosis.
The Vision Council estimates that more than 72% of the working population requires some form of vision correction. If employees are unable to see clearly, they can’t work up to their maximum level of productivity. Research has shown that visual impairment can reduce productivity by 20%, even if employees are unaware of the problem.
According to the American Optometric Association, between 50% and 90% of computer users suffer from computer-related vision problems. These may include eyestrain; burning, itching, dry or watery eyes; headaches; double vision; light sensitivity; eye pain; and excessive blinking or squinting. Medical treatment and lost productivity associated with this entire range of symptoms— referred to as Computer Vision Syndrome(CVS)— represent a significant cost to employers.
Vision Vitals is managed by a staff with more than ten years of direct experience in mobile eye screening, having staged thousands of events, using mobile eye screening units. We can deliver the most comprehensive, non-dilated eye screening evaluation no matter what the location.
Vision Vitals mobile eye screening units are self-contained and equipped with state-of-the-art equipment to perform an extensive vision screening.
Specific tests performed on each individual are as follows:
No medications are used in the screening process. Tests are performed by medical technicians. The results are reviewed by an attending eye care professional at the end of the screening with specific recommendations for follow-up where necessary.
For demographic tracking purposes, employees are given a Vision Vitals screening form. They are asked to fill out an anonymous personal history including age, race, gender, insurance status, last eye exam, recent vision changes or pain in the eyes. A liability release is also signed. Employees are given a brochure that discusses the value of a vision screening and what they can expect today.
Employees are then evaluated at each screening station in the mobile eye screening unit. The results are shared privately by the eye care professional, with recommendations as indicated. A copy of screening form with test results and values is also provided. Each person is requested to complete a brief exit questionnaire regarding eye disease, along with follow-up instructions, where appropriate. The entire process takes approximately 15 minutes.
Sources: “The Economic Impact of Vision Problems”, Prevent Blindness America, 2008. National Eye Institute, NIH, 2009.”The Boomers are coming! Prepare to provide their care” Eyenet Magazine, Dec. 2008 ; Ibid ; Vision Council Web Site, 2010. The Eye in Systemic Disease, University of Illinois Press, Chicago 2008.; Vision Council Website, 2010; All About Vision Website, April 2010.
Vision Vitals Foundation
790 Frontage Road, Suite 227
Northfield, IL 60093
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