Help make eye care an integral part of infant wellness

Help make eye care an integral part of infant wellness

In 2013, Kristi Kading, O.D., was in her private practice in Seattle when a concerned mother came in with her 6-month-old child.

Providers who contracted prior to April 2015 must sign a new agreement to continue to provide services through InfantSEE.

"She'd heard it wasn't normal to have one eye wandering in as an infant," Dr. Kading recalls.

The assessment was thorough, and Dr. Kading recognized the problem almost immediately. With a prescription of more than +3.50 hyperopia, she knew this infant was at significant risk of amblyopia.

Dr. Kading was able to prescribe a course of therapy—with a goal of improving the child's lifelong vision.

This is why Dr. Kading is a pediatric and vision therapy optometrist. It's also why she participates in InfantSEE®, a public health program managed by Optometry Cares®—the AOA Foundation and powered by the work of the 7,200 doctors of optometry who volunteer for the program.

Why become an InfantSEE provider?
Dr. Kading has been part of the program since she began her practice a decade ago. For her, it was a natural fit, as a pediatric optometrist. Nine times out of 10, infants have fine vision and the parents feel better, she says. And a surprising side effect for her practice is the chance to talk to parents about their whole family's vision care.

"It's not the goal, but it is a surprising byproduct that you end up seeing an exponential growth in your practice," she says. "We'll do the exam and ask a parent if they have an eye doctor. Or, they have their 3-year-old with them, too. It gives us an opportunity to educate the whole family."

Even without that benefit to her practice, Dr. Kading says she would still renew her participation in the program. For her, it's about prevention and better vision for those children down the road.

"It's the public health message," she says. "InfantSEE breaks down the walls and reminds parents that their infants need to be seen, too. The other side of it is that it's a joy to see the infants. That act of giving back to the community is a joy."

Click here to read more about the impact of InfantSEE, and the strides AOA has made to increase the number of comprehensive eye exams given to children.

Renew your commitment to children's eye health before year's end
Give back to families in your community by volunteering for the InfantSEE program. Interested doctors can sign up at infantsee.org/signup. Providers who contracted prior to April 2015 must recommit and sign a new agreement in order to continue to provide services through the InfantSEE program. The new agreement is available at infantsee.org/recommit.

And include InfantSEE, a program of Optometry Cares—the AOA Foundation, in your end-of-year giving.

November 12, 2015

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