Since the launch of Myopia Focus earlier this year, we have had a very positive response from parents, industry professionals and the press. Not only are we spreading awareness about the increasing prevalence of myopia in children worldwide through our social media channels we also want government bodies to take action. In order to do this, we launched a change.org petition, and we are very pleased to celebrate that we have now reached over 500 signatures!
The objective of the petition is for myopia to be recognised as an ocular disease by the NHS and for there to be free myopia management for all children in the United Kingdom. In 2015, the World Health Organisation declared that myopia (short-sightedness) is now at epidemic levels, with it being predicted that half of the world's population will be myopia by 2050.
We must see a change in government and NHS policy to eye care for children and young people to ensure that all children are regularly screened for myopia. It is also imperative that children receive equal and free access to effective means of myopia management. Their future eyesight is at significant risk if nothing is done fast.
Jason Higginbotham, Managing Editor at Myopia Focus, comments on why he created the campaign:
I’ve launched this campaign because I am concerned at the lack of understanding and support for what is going on with children’s eyes right now. Increased use of screens, close work, and lack of outdoor time have been proven to have had a significant impact on myopia becoming an epidemic. The genetic element of myopia will also compound the issues caused by modern lifestyles."
We would like to thank everyone who has already taken the time to sign the petition, but if you have not had to chance yet, please do this through this link, you can also find out more about what the petition aims to achieve.