Vision UK is the independent partnership organisation which will work with other organisations in the eye health and sight loss sector for the benefit of blind and partially sighted people, their communities and the general population including those at risk of sight loss.
Our ambition is for the UK to be a nation where:
Everyone looks after their sight.
People’s eye conditions are identified early, treated and, where possible, cured.
People receive services which meet their specific needs, joined- up and good quality.
People with sight loss live the lives they choose.
Our mission is to improve lives by raising the priority given to eye health and sight loss
We will involve private, public and voluntary organisations to: improve the nation’s eye health; address avoidable sight loss and invest in medical research to address currently unavoidable sight loss; join-up eye health and social care services; and promote an inclusive society for all.
To achieve this, we have set up three priority areas.
Priority area 1: Improve the nation’s eye health and end sight loss
Reducing avoidable sight loss would improve the quality of life of millions of people, positively impact on our health and social care system, and reduce costs to the UK economy.
It is important that we enable everyone in the UK to take responsibility for their eye health and for looking after their sight. We will make the case for regular eye tests so that sight conditions are identified and treated early.
For nearly a million people, their sight loss is not avoidable and there are currently no cures or very limited treatments. It is only by pioneering eye research that we will change this. By prioritising research we can give hope and optimism to those at risk or living with sight loss.
Priority area 2: Improve support across eye health and social care services
Everyone affected by sight loss has the right to receive the treatment and support they need at the right time, and in the most appropriate way.
People with eye conditions should receive timely treatment and regular appointments to manage their eye health and reduce the risk of further deterioration of their sight.
Every person with sight loss, young or old, should feel fully supported to live the lives they choose. This includes emotional and practical support and receiving information about available services. Where barriers to support exist, we must remove them, so people receive a smooth service.
Priority area 3: Improve awareness of sight loss and create an inclusive society for all
We aim to raise public awareness of the impact of sight loss and how negative attitudes and inadequate services can lead to social isolation and exclusion.
Together we can challenge ignorance, low expectations and poor service that lead to social exclusion through under-achievement in education, high unemployment, depression and loneliness, enabling blind and partially sighted people to fully participate in society.
By changing attitudes and services, we can empower people to lead independent lives and achieve social inclusion for all.
Vision UK is a registered charity which is governed by a Board of Trustees made up of experts from the eye health, sight loss and healthcare sectors.
Transformational priorities update
Our four transformational priorities are:
1. Establishing widely agreed statistics on the prevalence of sight loss
2. Promoting the advancement of scientific research leading to cures and treatments
3. A new deal for blind and VI people from the Voluntary Sector
4. Changing public opinion towards sight loss
Of these the new deal for blind people and the prevalence initiative both have project boards, with Guide Dogs and RNIB developing a proposition for addressing public attitudes. The cures and treatments strand, with its intimate connection to research and funding, will be explored in the next few months.