Healthy People 2020 (HP2020) is the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) health promotion and disease prevention initiative, which emphasizes to improve the visual health of the Nation through prevention, early detection, timely treatment, and rehabilitation. The Healthy People 2020 Vision objectives focus on evidence-based interventions to preserve sight and prevent blindness. Healthy People 2020 is based on the accomplishments of 4 previous Healthy People initiatives:
1979 Surgeon General's Report, Healthy People: The Surgeon General's Report on Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
Healthy People 1990: Promoting Health/Preventing Disease: Objectives for the Nation
Healthy People 2000: National Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Objectives
Healthy People 2010: Objectives for Improving Health
Healthy People 2020 is the result of a multiyear process that reflects input from a diverse group of individuals and organizations.
HP2020 contains health goals and over 600 health objectives, which includes 8 objectives addressing eye and vision conditions, to be met by the year 2020.
This year, in an effort to challenge the status quo of no change in children's vision objectives from HP-2010 to HP-2020 and confront a lack of progress in meeting these vision objectives, this latest round of HEHP grants will seek expanded community-based solutions to tackle the public health emergency of prevalent undiagnosed children's vision disorders.
The AOA believes that this public health emergency in children's vision and eye health must be resolved and that targeted efforts and new data from carefully selected 2012 HEHP grant applicants will be helpful in steering a course of action to more fully address the vision and eye health needs of America's children.
Potential grantees should develop and clearly describe pathways to increase access to comprehensive vision and eye health care for children while also providing the AOA with non-identified data collected; including but not limited to patient demographics, vision /eye health diagnosis and treatment. Additionally, any secondary prevention efforts that aim to find vision and eye health problems early in their course so that action can be taken to minimize the risk of progression of eye diseases or vision disorders should include a detailed description of programmatic elements, be targeted and use sufficiently sensitive methodologies.
Grantees should be aware that despite the current efforts to provide vision care for children, there is considerable evidence of disparities in both the access and utilization of professional vision care among children. Sadly, appropriate assurance of access to early and timely comprehensive vision care services by a professional eye care provider is often being sidetracked by low sensitivity vision screenings that produce an inordinate number of "false negatives" and /or symptomatic children simply not being referred to professional eye care services directly.
The eight vision objectives of the HEHP Program are:
V-1: Increase the proportion of children age 5 years and under who have visited (had an eye examination by) an eye care provider in the preceding 12 months.
V-2: Reduce visual impairment in children and adolescents.
V-3: Reduce occupational eye injuries.
V-3.1: Reduce occupational eye injuries resulting in lost work days.
V-3.2: Reduce occupational eye injuries treated in emergency departments.
V-4: Increase the proportion of adults who have a comprehensive eye examination, including dilation, within the past 2 years.
V-5: Reduce visual impairment.
V-5.1: Reduce visual impairment due to uncorrected refractive error.
V-5.2: Reduce visual impairment due to diabetic retinopathy.
V-5.3: Reduce visual impairment due to glaucoma.
V-5.4: Reduce visual impairment due to cataract.
V-5.5: Reduce visual impairment due to age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
V-6: Increase the use of personal protective eyewear in recreational activities and hazardous situations around the home.
V-6.1: Increase the use of personal protective eyewear in recreational activities and hazardous situations around the home among children and adolescents aged 6 to 17 years.
V-6.2: Increase the use of protective eyewear in recreational activities and hazardous situations around the home among adults aged 18 years and over.
V-7: Increase vision rehabilitation.
V-7.1: Increase the use of vision rehabilitation services by persons with visual impairment.
V-7.2: Increase the use of assistive and adaptive devices by persons with visual impairment.
V-8: (Developmental) Increase the proportion of Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) that provide comprehensive vision health services.
For more information about the HP 2020 vision objectives go to http://www.healthypeople.gov/2020/default.aspx
The AOA provides grants to state optometric associations to help address the vision needs of communities. Beginning in 2004, 42 grants totaling $90,000 were awarded to State Optometric Associations and made possible by the ophthalmic industry. These innovative HEHP collaborative community outreach program grants addressed one of the ten HP 2010 vision objectives.
In 2005, a total of 54 grants totaling $190,000 were awarded to State Optometric Associations with support from Luxottica Group and Vision Service Plan (VSP).
In 2006, 44 grants totaling $205,000 were awarded to State Optometric Associations through the generous support from Luxottica Group and VSP.
In 2007, there were 33 grants funded by VSP and Luxottica totaling $140,000.
In 2008, VSP and Luxottica funded 49 grants for a total of $185,000.
In 2009, Luxottica Group and VSP funded 57 grants for a total of $190,000.
In 2010, 20 grants totaling $80,000 were awarded to State Optometric Associations through the generous support from Luxottica Group.
In 2011, 19 grants totaling $72,000 were awarded to the State Optometric Associations for community eye and vision care efforts through generous support from Luxottica Group. With this year's grants, the AOA HEHP grant program has provided $1,152,000 in funding for vision outreach projects.
The goal of HEHP is for optometrists to change community health programs so that vision services are provided and optometrists are recognized as vital to the health care system.
For additional information contact the AOA Foundation at Foundation@aoa.org.