The Future of Vision: Forecasting the Prevalence and Costs of Vision Problems

  • The report used a prevalence‐based approach to generate projections of the future prevalence and costs of vision problems based on the US Census Bureau’s national population projections from the year 2014 to 2050.

  • The Cost of Vision Problems and projected changes in inflation, medical costs, wage growth, healthcare utilization and medical intensity. This report details the data, methods and results of this analysis, and shows the potential impacts of projected changes and trends in visual health and the population.

  • It estimates that by 2032, the visually impaired population aged 40 and older will increase by 66% to nearly 5.1 million and the blind population will increase 59% to 2.2 million.

  • By 2050, the impaired and blind populations are projected to reach 7.3 million (2.4 times higher than in 2014) and 3.1 million (2.3 times higher than in 2014), respectively.

  • Also by 2050, the number of Americans with advanced‐stage AMD will double to 4.4 million, glaucoma prevalence will increase 93% to 5.5 million, cataract will grow by 78% to 45.6 million, and the prevalence of diabetic retinopathy will increase by 63% to 13.2 million.

Publication date

February 19, 2019


Prevent Blindness

Sponsor Institution

Prevent Blindness


University of Chicago's National Opinion Research Center (NORC)
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