The College of Optometrists has announced the launch of a new eye health awareness campaign, Eyes for a Lifetime. Its communications team will undertake a series of initiatives with the national and consumer media, highlighting how eye examinations are a vital health check that should be part of everyone’s normal health regime.
The Eyes for a Lifetime campaign aims to raise awareness amongst the UK public about the importance of looking after their eyes. According to statistics, up to 2 per cent of GP visits are due to an eye complaint*. The campaign is set to help the medical profession by targeting GPs and other healthcare professionals who can help reach patients with key messages about the importance of visiting an optometrist for regular eye examinations.
The Eyes for a Lifetime campaign was launched last month with the release of new research by the College of Optometrists which revealed that one third of UK drivers are at risk of breaking the law and causing car accidents as a result of driving with poor eyesight. The research revealed that 20 per cent of drivers have taken to the roads knowing that they can’t see adequately and up to 21 per cent put off going for an eye examination for up to 5 years after noticing a deterioration in their eyesight.
The ongoing Eyes for a Lifetime campaign will focus on four themes which will be developed over the next year:
– Nutrition and eating for eye health
– Eye health in older age
– Children and looking after their eyesight
– Ethnicity and eye health
The first of these campaigns, which focuses on nutrition and commenced in March, sees the College link with nutritionist Fiona Hunter and promote the impact a healthy lifestyle and diet can have on the health of our eyes.
The subsequent campaigns will be aimed at specific target audiences, helping to raise awareness amongst ‘at risk’ groups.
Running alongside the campaigns, the College will also be producing a series of factsheets and tips on topics associated with eye health, including:
– Dry eye
– Contact lenses
– Driving and vision
– Working with VDUs
These fact sheets, and other useful information about eye health, will be available on a brand new consumer website, to be launched in May. Eye health information can currently be found at: http://www.mediconews.com
The College of Optometrists is the Professional, Scientific and Examining Body for Optometry in the UK and works for the public benefit. It promotes eye health and supports its Members in all aspects of professional development, enabling them to serve their patients well and contribute to the wellbeing of local communities.