Access to eye care and prevalence of refractive error and eye conditions at a high school-based eye clinic in southeastern Michigan

This research analyzed data from a bi-monthly eye program run by optometrists at a high school in a poverty-affected community. A total of 429 initial student visits between February 2015 and July 2019 were examined, excluding follow-up visits. The findings showed that most students were around 14 years old, with a majority being female (55.7%), Black (59.7%), and Medicaid recipients (61.7%). A significant portion of students had previously undergone eye exams (70.2%), and many had worn glasses before (60.8%), with a quarter still wearing them. Notably, Hispanic students were less likely to have had prior eye exams and worn glasses compared to non-Hispanic students. The study revealed that Black students had worse visual acuity than White students. However, a higher percentage of Black students showed significant improvements in visual acuity. Overall, 74% of participating students received glasses, and 21 needed referrals to ophthalmologists, with 13 attending these appointments. This underscores the value of school-based eye clinics in addressing uncorrected vision problems in impoverished populations and raises concerns about racial and ethnic disparities in prior eye care utilization.

Publication date

July 19, 2022


Journal of American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus


Olivia J. Killeen, Yunshu Zhou, David C. Musch, Maria Woodward, Paula Anne Newman-Casey, Sayoko Moroi, Nicole Speck, Ali Mukhtar, Courtney Dewey
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