The Times-Union Mon, Jul 11, 2016
New, non-invasive equipment can detect vision problems in those young as 6 months,officials say
A Foundation has given the Camden County Health Department a $5,000 grant to begin an advanced vision screening program to ensure children can see well enough to read.
The Communities of Coastal Georgia Foundation grant will support a literacy improvement program that focuses on ensuring children are reading at grade level by the end of the third grade, the Coastal Health District said in a release. The Health Department will buy a small machine that uses a non-invasive technique to quickly and accurately detect vision problems in children as young as 6 months old and older than 5. Currently, the Health Department provides a basic vision screen for children 3 through 5 that is required before they are enrolled in school, the health district said.
Earlier detection can result in getting vision problems corrected sooner, said Mallory Chappell, nurse manager of the Camden County Health Department. “Our long-term goal is to promote early literacy through reading. It is our hope that detecting vision problems in our children will help accomplish that goal,’’ she said. Part of the Foundation funding will be used to educate parents and others caring for children on the importance of early vision screening and the impact of undetected and untreated vision problems on children’s ability to read and learn, the Health District said.