22 March 2019
Source: Cardiff University
A pioneering report co-authored by Dr Maggie Woodhouse has provided further evidence that traditional eye screening in special schools is ineffective in detecting vision problems for children with learning disabilities. The research, which was funded by the vision charity SeeAbility, concluded that full eye examinations are a more effective method for detection.
The report aimed to present the findings of an opt-in, school-based eye care service for children attending special schools in England and use these findings to determine whether a vision screening programme would be appropriate for this population. Maggie and colleague Barbara Ryan have already published findings from a small scale study in Wales, but this latest and much larger project extended the survey to England, suggesting that the outcomes apply nation-wide.
Vision screening in the general childhood population improves the identification and correction of reduced vision and is implemented in many countries worldwide. However, there is a body of evidence that children with learning disabilities are significantly more likely to experience eye and vision problems than members of the general childhood population, and children with the most complex needs are likely to be taught in special schools.
Read the full report on the Cardiff University website