Each May, the National Eye Institute sponsors Healthy Vision Month (HVM), an annual observance designed to elevate vision as a health priority for the nation. HVM, which is part of a broader, year-round communication strategy, focuses on raising awareness about the importance of comprehensive dilated eye exams in maintaining good eye health.
Eye diseases often have no symptoms. Comprehensive dilated eye exams play a critical role in the preservation of sight by helping to detect eye diseases in their early stages before any noticeable vision loss occurs. Eye care professionals can also detect any refractive errors such as myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), presbyopia and astigmatism, which can often be easily corrected with glasses or contact lenses. NEI encourages all Americans to have regular eye exams.
HVM also promotes the importance of good eye safety practices at work, at home and in recreational and sports activities. To learn more about what NEI is doing for HVM and to find resources to raise awareness about eye health, comprehensive dilated eye exams and eye safety, visit www.nei.nih.gov/hvm.
NEI is also hosting a variety of other activities in May and June to celebrate HVM—all are welcome:
• Now through June 30: Give to the 11th annual Food Drive sponsored by NEI to benefit the Capital Area Food Bank. Donation boxes for nonperishable food items are located around the NIH campus, including the lobby of Bldg. 31A. Food will also be collected at the last two events mentioned below.
• May 11-July 8 at the Clinical Center Galleries: View the paintings of Ruth Lotz, an accomplished artist living independently with low vision.
• May 18 at 1 p.m. in Bldg. 45, Rm. C1/C2: Listen to Dr. Rachel Bishop, chief, consult services section, NEI, speak about keeping your eyes healthy—part of the NIH Focus on Wellness series.
• June 7 at 2 p.m. in Masur Auditorium: See the documentary Going Blind, a film that examines how blindness and low vision issues profoundly affect the lives of people and those who love them. More information about the film can be found at http://goingblindmovie.com/synopsis/index.html.