Header Gradient
About Us

Our Impact

Children’s Vision Massachusetts is the only coordinated effort in Massachusetts dedicated to raising awareness and advocating for children’s vision. The 70-member coalition’s activities and collaborations include:

  • Identifying gaps in vision care
  • Implementing evidence-based programs to improve systems of early detection
  • Providing guidance on child vision screening and eye health protocols
  • Training parents and professionals in the field
  • Improving vision screening technology through research
  • Promoting improved policies for children’s vision across the state
  • Educating a broad range of stakeholders


Advocacy & Awareness

  • Championed the establishment of the Special Commission on Children’s Vision and Eye Health
  • Provided testimony in support of five children’s vision bills in the state legislature
  • Advocated for the inclusion of children’s eyeglasses as an Essential Health Benefit\
  • Hosted three informational Summits on children’s vision research and outcomes
  • Created a Geo Map detailing disparities in state access to pediatric eye care
  • Promoted parent advocacy through a Facebook page and other social media sites
  • Distribute a monthly newsletter to 1100 subscribers, including stories from a Storybank collection

Free, Multi-lingual Resources

  • Eyes That Thrive – a School-based vision program (4 languages)
  • Mass Health Eye Doctor Resource Guide for children 5 years and younger
  • “Think of Vision” Guide for Teachers – grade school and preschool (two languages)
  • When Your Child Does Not Pass a Vision Screening (six languages)
  • Is My Child Seeing Clearly? A guide for parents of children in Early Intervention (7 languages)
  • Children’s Vision Digital Screen Tips (2 languages)
  • Major MA Vision Centers Treating Children with Special Healthcare Needs
  • System of Vision Screening and Care A vision screening and follow-up flowchart for screeners
  • Videos: Developing Eyes; Open Eyes Open Doors; Ask About Vision

Collaborations with Massachusetts State Departments

  • Early Intervention Division: IFSP policy change, webinar training, parent brochure
  • Department of Public Health: protocol updates 2016 & 2021, school nurse webinar training
  • Department of Elementary & Secondary Education: “Children’s Vision Brief” for educators, school principal presentations, e-newsletters
  • Mass Health: promote & facilitate provider and public dialogue; testified at 2021 strategic “listening session” for vision regulation revision; coordinated Mass Health opticians survey
  • Department of Developmental Services: 2021 update to the DDS Preventative Health Screenings eye care guidelines; a proposed new webinar series on eye health
  • New Massachusetts Vision Screening Protocols
  • Mass Health Vision Care Services

Program Development Guidance

Provided guidance on eye vision and health programming across the state: Northeastern University, the Lowell Health Department, Boston Public Schools, Boston University, the Massachusetts Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, Haverhill Promise, Springfield EyeSee, and Pediatric Physicians Organization at Children’s Hospital.

Additional Accomplishments

  • 14,000 parents and professionals have attended free presentations
  • 50,000+ preschoolers have been screened with free SPOT screening devices
  • 76,000 printed educational resources have been dispersed
  • 500+ individuals without health insurance have received free eyeglasses
  • 800+ professionals have been trained and certified in vision screening
  • Contributed to advancement of children’s vision at a national level, through collaborations with Prevent Blindness, and related engagements in federal grant initiatives, including children’s vision research and peer-reviewed publications
  • Secured a 5-year grant from American Academy of Pediatrics to establish best practices for vision health of children in Massachusetts, the first AAP grant awarded in area of children’s vision health

Future Impact

The many accomplishments from the past decade, detailed above, have been made possible by funding from Prevent Blindness, a Chicago-based national organization dedicated to preventing blindness and preserving sight. As we move into our second decade, we seek ongoing, sustainable local funding to ensure our sight-saving mission continues.
With appropriate funding, Children’s Vision Massachusetts can achieve the following over the coming years to promote children’s vision and quality of life in Massachusetts:

Year One Goals

  • Advance the current children’s vision bills in the legislature including a request for federal American Rescue Plan Act funds for children’s vision (2021/22)
  • Promote uniform implementation of the new Massachusetts Department of Public Health vision screening protocols (Sept 2022)\
  • Conduct webinars to train health professionals on new vision screening protocols
  • Improve vision screening rates during and beyond COVID
  • Produce new professional and parent/caregiver educational videos
  • Support families with children with vision loss and those at-risk of vision loss
  • Collaborate in programs such as the “Vision for Boston” at the Boston Public Schools
  • Grow deeper partnerships with State Departments and other key organizations and coalitions that promote child health, wellness and education
  • Provide an updated eye doctor guide, and geo-map, highlighting existing disparities in access to care across the Commonwealth

Year Three Goals

  • Convene a Children’s Vision Task Force to establish a universal, statewide data system for children’s vision\
  • Establish a permanent statewide program to be responsible for overseeing and coordinating children’s vision health services
  • Eliminate inequities in access to eye care and wrap-around vision services
  • Resolve inequities in health insurance coverage for eyeglasses ensuring glasses are covered and accessible without burdensome co-pays, deductibles, or delays
  • Incentivize primary health care practices to conduct evidence-based vision screening and care coordination for all children

Year Five Goals

Massachusetts is well on its way to being a model state for children’s vision and eye health policies, practices, and life-long health promotion. It is our plan that with further local investment, within five years we will have best practices for family support, inter-agency coordination, and vision preservation fully in place.