“Currently 180,000 Kiwis are blind, deafblind, or have low vision, and we expect those numbers to increase to 225,000 by 2028.
“We estimate that 75-80% of blindness and low vision is avoidable, and New Zealanders should not be losing their sight as a result of preventable causes.” John Mulka, Eye Health Aotearoa.
This year we celebrated World Sight Day in collaboration with Macular Degeneration New Zealand and Blind Low Vision NZ. The event was hosted at Blind Low Vision NZ’s new premises in Parnell, Auckland, on Tuesday 24 October 2023. The theme was ‘Love Your Eyes in the Workplace’ and the objective was to raise awareness of how to take care of eye health at all stages of life, and to specifically highlight Macular Degeneration profile and education.
World Sight Day is on Thursday 12 October 2023. This year the focus is on the importance of eye care in the workplace. We are encouraging employers to make eye health initiatives standard practice and promote eye health habits that will benefit the well-being, safety and productivity of their workers. The first step for everyone is to prioritise their own eye health and get regular eye checks.
Eye Health Aotearoa Political Party Survey
Where do our political parties stand on eye health issues?
We asked political parties a set of questions that are of crucial importance to all New Zealanders.
Parties were asked to give yes/no responses and invited to make an additional 150-word statement. We received responses from the Labour, National, Green and ACT Parties. The Green Party followed the format precisely. For the other parties, we have summarised their responses to the questions.
Watch and listen to Eye Health Aotearoa's John Mulka and Chrissie Cowan make their oral submission to the New Zealand Government Petitions Committee, 1 June 2023, on "Why Aotearoa New Zealand needs a National Eye Health Survey".
[Press 'CC' button for auto-captioning by YouTube. Apologies for any errors.]
Special investigation: Why getting cataract surgery depends on where you live
Today is an historical moment for the Eye Health Aotearoa Trust. We signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Roche New Zealand.
[John Mulka and Alexander Muelhaupt sign the Memorandum of Understanding on behalf of the Eye Health Aotearoa Trust and Roche New Zealand respectively]
The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists and Kāpō Māori Aotearoa New Zealand have partnered to address the stark inequities Māori face when it comes to eye health.
Read more at Radio New Zealand.
Chrissie Cowan of Kapo Maori and Hon Peeni Henare, Associate Minister of Health (Māori Health).
The World Sight Day 2022 Report has been released.
Aotearoa New Zealand's contribution via peak body Eye Health Aotearoa includes:
- The inaugural Love Your Eyes 2022 'Tactile Art Competition' and Eye Test Pledges;
- The launch of the “Eye Care in Aotearoa New Zealand 2022 – Eye Care Situation Analysis Tool (ESCAT)” report and free eye checks for MPs and parliamentary staff; and
- The presentation, at Parliament, of the petition for a 'National Eye Health Survey' to Minister of Health Hon Andrew Little, along with Toni Severin MP, Simon Court MP, Dr Anae Neru Leavasa MP, Dr Liz Craig MP, and Dr Elizabeth Kerekere MP, in collaboration with the Parliamentary Friends of Eye Health.
Read the World Sight Day 2022 Report here: https://www.iapb.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/11/WSD2022-WrapUp-report-v4-accessible.pdf (see page 6 for a spotlight on Aotearoa New Zealand with photo of Eye Health Aotearoa secretariat Dianne Rogers speaking to MPs in Wellington).
This month, Kāpō Māori Aotearoa (KMA) was awarded with a National Hauora Māori Partners Innovation and Sustainability Fund grant (2022/2023). Te Aka Whai Ora are proud to be able to mihi the important mahi KMA do to support tāngata whaikaha Māori and whānau in the health and disability service provision.
The Love Your Eyes 2022 Tactile Art Competition winners were announced at the Copthorne Hotel Wellington Oriental Bay on Wednesday 12 October. The annual Love Your Eyes campaign aims to raise awareness about eye health care in Aotearoa New Zealand, so that more people will get their eyes checked regularly and to encourage the Government to make eye health care a priority.
The winners of the Love Your Eyes 2022 Tactile Art Competition are:
The International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) wants everyone to love their eyes. As part of this year’s Love Your Eyes campaign, the IAPB encouraged people worldwide to get their eyes tested. The goal was to conduct 5 million eye tests in the month leading up to World Sight Day on 13 October.