2020:
Make this The Year of Vision!

EYE HEALTH CURRICULUM FOR EDUCATORS & PUBLIC HEALTH GROUPS
A quality, no-cost educational material to support remote learning for children is available from Prevent Blindness The  Star Pupils Children’s Eye Health and Safety curricula is offered for educators of children in Grades K-2, Grades 3-5 & Grades 6-8 .
The curriculum of interactive materials help students learn the importance of sight, components of the eye and how we see, and how to identify objects and situations that can be dangerous to eyes. Each curriculum includes teacher presentation guides & grade-specific worksheets.

The curriculum is free.  Registration takes no more than 30-60 seconds. Your downloadable link will be available immediately. For more information or to request a free download, please click here
For parents and caregivers : the  Star Pupils Activity Book will help children learn about their eyes and healthy vision.  The activity book can be downloaded for free  here

MAY IS
UV AWARENESS MONTH

Extended exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays can immediately cause damage to eyes, including photokeratitis, also referred to as a “corneal sunburn.”  UV damage to the eyes may also be cumulative, resulting in the development of cataract or cancer later in life.
The risk of sun-related eye problems is higher for people who:
  • have light-colored eyes
  • spend long hours in the sun
  • have had cataract surgery  
  • have certain retina disorders
  • are on certain medicines, such as tetracycline, sulfa drugs, birth control pills, diuretics and tranquilizers that increase the eye's sensitivity to light.

The best protection against UV damage to the eyes is wearing a brimmed hat in conjunction with UV-blocking sunglasses.  Always read labels carefully and only purchase sunglasses that clearly state that the sunglasses block 99 to 100 percent of UV-A and UV-B rays . An eye care professional can recommend the best eye protection based on outdoor activity and/or prescription lens needs. 
 
We can protect our vision today and for years to come. Consistently protecting our eyes and faces is one way to help save sight. 
Prevent Blindness  provides dedicated fact sheets and web resources, from  how UV can damage the eyes , to advice on  choosing the best UV eye protection,  and more - please click here .
HEALTH INSURANCE COVERAGE DURING COVID-19
Massachusetts residents losing their jobs and job-based health coverage can swiftly and easily make their way into health coverage through the Health Connector.

The ConnectorCare program connects qualifying Massachusetts residents with affordable health coverage with low or $0 premiums and low co-pays and no deductibles. The special enrollment period runs through May 25  to ensure that everyone who has lost or may be about to lose job-based coverage can get the help they need. To apply click here .

2020 Bonnie Strickland Champion for Children's Vision Award
The National Center for Children's Vision and Eye Health (NCCVEH) have opened applications for the  2020 Bonnie Strickland Champion for Children’s Vision Award. The Award recognizes significant contributions by an individual or group to improve public health approaches for children’s vision and eye health at the state or national level. The award was established by the NCCVEH Advisory Committee to commemorate Bonnie Strickland and her groundbreaking work to establish a comprehensive system for children’s vision in the United States. This year’s award is significant since the Center is celebrating its 10 th  anniversary.
For more information and the application materials, click  here  
SCHOOL NURSE DAY IS MAY 6!
National School Nurse Day was established in 1972, to foster a better understanding of the role of school nurses in the educational setting.
 
The theme this year – School Nurses: Supporting Students in Times of Crisis – reinforces the changing times of 2020. This year, more than ever, all school nurses have been required to take on unprecedented roles and adapt quickly to changes in their jobs. It is reflective of the significant roles school nurses have in the health care of their school communities to help make a healthier place for children and families to learn and grow.

Every year, public school nurses vision screen children from Kindergarten to high school. We thank every school nurse for their dedication to a child's well-being by completing this important task - which helps early identification of children with potential vision disorders - and supporting each child's vision treatment at school, so the child is healthy and ready to learn, enjoy play, and thrive.
MARK YOUR CALENDARS: FOCUS ON EYE HEALTH NATIONAL SUMMIT
ONLINE!
On Wednesday, July 15th, 2020, Prevent Blindness will host their 9th Annual  Focus on Eye Health National Summit  online.
This year the new online platform will be interactive.
Mark your calendars and stay tuned!
Want to be a part of our effort? Join our Facebook Children's Vision MA Advocacy Group
To support the work of Children's Vision Massachusetts, please consider making a DONATION