101 Vision and Eye Health Organizations Sign Letter in Support of Children’s Eye Examinations and Vision Screenings
This week, Prevent Blindness sent a letter signed by 101 vision and eye health organizations to the United States Senate ahead of its work in drafting companion legislation to the House-passed American Healthcare Act (AHCA). Specifically, the letter asks that the U.S. Senate retain the Affordable Care Act (ACA)’s definition of “essential health benefits (EHBs),” which include coverage for children’s vision services (including eye examinations and glasses) as well as preventive health services which includes vision screenings. As written, the AHCA would allow states to determine what EHBs should be offered on insurance markets in their state or apply for waivers to opt out of providing basic, preventive medical services. Vision impairments and eye disorders are the 3rd leading chronic condition among children; however, most common childhood eye disorders and vision impairments are easily treatable if caught early. Access to early detection and cost-effective treatments are critical in ensuring that a child’s development and learning ability are not jeopardized due to an undetected vision impairment or eye disorder.