Optical Health – Support

People at risk of developing eye disease, older people, people with diabetes or with a family history and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people will benefit under a new measure to improve the quality and delivery of eye health services.

Page last updated: 09 May 2006

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Why is this important?

  • Much vision loss in Australia is avoidable through early detection and intervention but many Australians with treatable eye diseases do not seek help until it is too late for sight to be preserved. For example, half of the estimated 200,000 Australians with glaucoma do not know that they have the disease even though treatment is highly effective if commenced early.
  • This measure aims to reduce the incidence of preventable vision loss through strategies to raise public awareness of eye health issues and improve the quality, and streamline the delivery of eye health care.

Who will benefit?

  • People at risk of eye disease including older people, those with diabetes or a family history of eye disease, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people will benefit from activities to promote eye health and reduce avoidable blindness and vision loss.

What funding is the Government committing to the initiative?

  • The Government is committing new funding of $13.8 million over four years to this initiative.

What have we done in the past?

  • This new programme will complement the annual Government expenditure of more than $500 million on eye care services.

When will the initiative conclude?

  • This initiative will be reviewed in the 2010-11 Budget.

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