Australia has no cohesive government led coordination of eye health and vision care services, therefore there is no national approach to the development of policy, prioritisation of action and funding allocation to tackle avoidable and treatable blindness, and assist those with vison loss to be able to fully participate in the community.
The Commonwealth Government has committed to the development of a National Framework Implementation Plan (NFIP) that outlines specific performance indicators or tracking mechanisms to ensure they meet the goals laid out in the National Framework for Action to Promote Eye Health and Prevent Avoidable Blindness and Vision Loss. To this end, the Commonwealth has allocated funding to a National Eye Health Survey, which will fulfil one of the three priority areas identified.
The state and territory governments however are yet to commit to the development of a NFIP. Involvement of all jurisdictions across Australia will be essential for improving service provision and meeting Australia’s responsibility under the global action plan.
The next major step will be to build on the existing NFIP to produce a revised version and move towards inclusion of all states and territories. Vision 2020 Australia will be continuing to advocate to the state and territory governments for jurisdictional inclusion in the revised NFIP.
Vision 2020 Australia and members will continue to assist the Department of Health in moving to implementation of the NFIP and providing advice to the Department of Health on the three priority areas identified, including: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, chronic disease (diabetes) and improving the evidence base (National Eye Health Survey).
More information and background on the NFIP can be found in the resources section.