Vision 2020 Australia’s Policy and Advocacy Officer Jess Cutter considers what it will take to Close the Gap for Vision by 2020.
Eye Health Hero Dr Kathy Davidson never thought she would see stem cell therapy come to fruition in her lifetime. But after spending the last eighteen months working on an intensive research project to discover the cause of age-related macular degeneration, she is hopeful that stem cell technology will soon be delivering astounding results.
Every day when I come to work at the Centre for Eye Research Australia, based in the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, I see many patients suffering from different eye diseases. Some of them have low vision; some of them are legally blind. Often I ask myself the same question: can my research with stem cells help these patients?
Depression is a serious health concern in Australia and affects approximately 1 in 3 individuals with low vision. For a person who has a vision impairment, depression can lead to increased levels of disability, reduced quality of life and interfere with and restrict rehabilitation outcomes (such as the use of optical devices and aids).
My younger brother was four years old when he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes mellitus. A previously well child, there were no obvious signs that his pancreas was under an insidious attack from his own immune system until his insulin ran out and he experienced dangerously high blood glucose levels. Like the diabetes itself, the complications of diabetes are hard to detect until considerable damage has already been done.
In the second interview of our Q&A series, Vision 2020 Australia talks to Dr. Penny Allen about the amazing Bionic Eye Project currently running in pilot phase. Dr. Allen is an ophthalmologist in the medical and vitreoretinal unit at the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital (RVEEH); a medical retina and vitreoretinal surgeon on staff at The Alfred; and Program Leader, Surgical Program at Bionic Vision Australia. She is also an associate at the Centre for Eye Research Australia.