WHO Introduces New Guide to Tackle Growing Eye Health Crisis

WHO Introduces New Guide to Tackle Growing Eye Health Crisis

May 24, 2022

At the 75th World Health Assembly scheduled for May 22-28 in Switzerland, the World Health Organization (WHO) is launching the "Eye care in health systems: Guide for action" in response to the global eye care crisis. 

At least 2.2 billion people have a visual impairment, but almost half of vision impairment is preventable or treatable. Without urgent resource, funding and efforts, the number of people who are blind could triple by 2050, according to international charity and advocacy group SightSavers

This guide will help governments, non-government organizations, the private sector and other stakeholders prioritize eye health issues and deliver quality, inclusive, cost-effective, eye care. It provides an evidence-based framework and tools to assess country eye health situations, implement recommendations from the World Report on Vision and work towards global eye health targets.

Sumrana Yasmin, Senior Global Technical Lead: Eye Health URE at Sightsavers, was part of the team that developed elements of the guide and could support development of a piece.

“Eye health is an often-forgotten element of health and wellbeing, and this has led to a mounting global crisis. The ‘Eye care in health systems: Guide for action’ is a vital step to addressing this," Ms. Yasmin said.

"The big task ahead is to make sure that long-term investment, policies, and resources are in place to achieve recommendations set out in the World Report on Vision and make use of the tools in the guide. It is essential that there is collaboration between governments, non-government organizations, the private sector and other stakeholders, and true integration of eye health services into wider health and education systems,” she added.