Center for Vision Loss Posts Service Increases, Maintains Excellent Quality Ratings

October 3, 2018

The Center for Vision Loss – the only agency dedicated to the visual well-being of everyone in Lehigh, Northampton, and Monroe counties – posted increases in several service categories during its 2017-2018 year and maintained excellent quality ratings from those it serves.

The agency engaged a total of 15,564 unique individuals during the year ending June 30, 2018 – a 24 percent increase from the previous year. Those individuals included 524 vision loss clients and 15,040 community members. The agency delivers numerous support and rehabilitation services for people with vision loss along with free vision screenings, community education for children and adults, and promotional appearances that promote eye health and safety.

The agency screened a total of 8,174 people in 2017-2018, an increase of 15 percent. A total of 707 screened children and adults were referred for additional care, an increase of 21 percent. The number of people served through agency community education programs increased 38 percent.

The organization’s escorted transportation service for vision loss clients provided 3,136 rides during 2017-2018, a 25 percent increase over a two-year span. The number of clients who participated in quality of life services – including lifeskills education programs – increased more than 13 percent over two years. More than 76 percent of the agency’s clients meet common low-income standards.

For the second straight year, more than 90 percent of vision loss clients maintained their independence and 100 percent of lifeskills education participants improved at least one functional capability. The organization’s goals in those categories and are 75 percent and 85 percent respectively. Vision loss clients also gave the agency’s transportation service a satisfaction rating of more than 96 percent.

“Our increases in services provided reflect growing needs throughout the region, and our impressive quality ratings reflect how well we’re able to respond to the challenge,” said Douglas A. Yingling, Executive Director of the Center for Vision Loss. “We appreciate the trust that the people of our area have placed in us, and we pledge every day to reward that trust with service that empowers them to enjoy what life has to offer.”

Two new agency initiatives begun in 2017-2018 were its Kaleidoscope program and its Hispanic outreach project. The Kaleidoscope program – funded by the Northeast PA Lions Service Foundation – provides the specialized services of a vision rehabilitation therapist to clients who are at ask of losing their independence or need to adjust to a recent loss of vision. The Hispanic outreach initiative – funded by the Bill Sugra Memorial Fund – delivered bilingual information sessions in popular locations to increase awareness of eye diseases, treatment options, and available resources.

The Center for Vision Loss is the only organization dedicated to the visual well-being of everyone in Lehigh, Northampton, and Monroe counties and is the Pennsylvania Association for the Blind’s (PAB) only accredited service provider in these communities. Its nonprofit mission is to enable personal triumphs over visual impairments, and its guiding principle is that vision loss should never be a barrier to achievement, independence, dignity, and hope. The agency delivers support, skills education, and rehabilitation services at little or no cost for people with vision loss, provides free vision screenings for children, and promotes visual health and safety. Impact on vision loss clients reflects in their abilities to live independently and improve their capabilities. Impact upon communities at large reflects in the numbers of children who receive free vision screenings and the number of people reached by agency’s education programs and outreach appearances.

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