More than 500 Atlanta seniors helped during VSP Eye on Diabetes campaign
August 08, 2011
Free eye exams, eyewear and diabetes screenings provided to low-income, uninsured and underinsured residents
Rancho Cordova, Calif., August 8, 2011 – On August 5-6, more than 500 low-income, uninsured and underinsured seniors in Atlanta received free health services, including comprehensive eye exams, diabetes screenings and high blood pressure screenings as part of the VSP Eye on Diabetes campaign’s largest event to date.
VSP® Vision Care partnering with the Georgia Optometric Association, Medicare Diabetes Screening Project (MDSP) and Atlanta Regional Commission’s Area Agency on Aging, VSP® Vision Care brought two mobile eye clinics outfitted with state-of-the-art exam rooms, dispensaries and a finishing lab to provide services to those who have or are at risk for diabetes. The campaign focus is to increase awareness and understanding of the connection between eyecare and a person’s general health.
Unique to this event, all qualified Medicare beneficiaries with prediabetes were enrolled in a 16-session lifestyle intervention class that has proven to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. A program provided through MDSP, the enrollees will have access to a trained lifestyle coach to help them change their habits by learning about healthier eating, simple ways to increase physical activity and other changes that lead to a healthier lifestyle.
“The goal of the VSP Eye on Diabetes campaign is to raise awareness about the importance of eyecare and the role of optometry in detecting and managing chronic diseases, such as diabetes,” said Cheryl Johnson, Vice President of Provider Services, VSP Vision Care. “Partnering with these great local organizations is critical to helping a community seek greater knowledge and understanding of how to incorporate positive preventative care behaviors, such as annual eye exams, into their lives.”
In recognition of the VSP Eye on Diabetes campaign Georgia Governor Nathan Deal proclaimed Aug. 5-6 “Eye on Diabetes Days in Georgia.” It is estimated that 707,000 Georgia residents have been diagnosed with diabetes, with more than 51,000 newly diagnosed cases of adult diabetes every year.
"We are excited to partner with VSP for the Eye on Diabetes campaign,” said Maurice Madden, Georgia Director of the Medicare Diabetes Screening Project. “They are providing critical services and education to seniors in the Atlanta area about the importance of preventative care, supporting our mission to create awareness of the Medicare benefits and resources available for those with diabetes."
The VSP Eye on Diabetes campaign has made stops in eight states since it launched in 2010, and will continue to Harrisburg, PA for the final stop of 2011.
For more information about the campaign, visit vsp.com/community.
About VSP Global
VSP GlobalSM includes VSP Vision Care, the largest not-for-profit vision benefits and services company in the United States with 55 million members; Marchon® Eyewear Inc., one of the world’s largest manufacturers, designers and distributors of quality fashion and technologically-advanced eyewear and sunwear; Eyefinity®/Officemate® which offer innovative solutions and the premier management software and technology to improve overall practice management and patient experience; VSP Optics Group, industry leaders in new technologies, production processes, service and logistics.
To date, through VSP community outreach programs such as VSP Mobile Eyes® and Sight for Students®, and through relationships including those with the American Red Cross and Prevent Blindness America, VSP has invested more than $138 million in free eyecare and eyewear for more than 715,000 adults and children in need throughout the United States.