Uninsured Children to Receive Free Eye Exams and Free Eyeglasses
All uninsured and underinsured children can receive free eye screenings and, if needed, two free pairs of eyeglasses at “Give Kids Sight Day” on Saturday, October, 24th, 2015 at Wills Eye Hospital. All children, 17 and under, will be examined on a first come, first served basis from 8:30am until 2:00pm. No insurance or appointments are necessary.
Public Citizens for Children and Youth (PCCY), Wills Eye Hospital, Eagles Youth Partnership, Thomas Jefferson University, Visionworks and the First Hospital Foundation are teaming up for the sixth annual event.
“If we can successfully reach the underserved children who are struggling with their vision – we can dramatically enhance their chances for a better life and opportunities,” said Alex V. Levin, MD, MHSc, Chief of Pediatric Ophthalmology and Ocular Genetics at Wills Eye Hospital.
After a comprehensive screening and exam from area eye doctors who are volunteering their time for the event, Visionworks will provide two free pairs of eyeglasses to each child that needs them.
“We’re proud to be part of Give Kids Sight Day again this year,” said Jim Eisen, president and CEO of HVHC Inc., and president of Visionworks. “At Visionworks, we understand the importance of annual eye exams for children. Through Give Kids Sight Day, and our own Let’s Go See initiative, we are able to provide children with much-needed eye health information and eyewear.”
Children from Philadelphia and the suburbs who have failed an eye screening at school or have not had their eyes examined in the last year are strongly urged to attend. Registration for this free event will take place at Alumni Hall at Thomas Jefferson Medical College located at 10th and Locust Streets in Philadelphia starting at 8:30 am.
“State law currently prohibits thousands of children in our region from enrolling in public health insurance, making it very difficult and costly for them to receive routine eye care,” said Colleen McCauley, Health Director for PCCY. “At Give Kids Sight Day, hundreds of volunteers and health professionals will be on hand to give our children the proper care they deserve, free of charge.”
Parents should note that registration, screening and selecting glasses can take several hours. Families are encouraged to plan ahead for food, transportation and parking. Also, thanks to a donation from Visionworks, every child participating at this year’s Give Kids Sight Day will receive two free SEPTA tokens. While waiting for eye care, families will be invited to participate in a health fair featuring blood pressure screenings and assistance with applying for health insurance. In addition, the Eagles Book Mobile will be parked on-site distributing free books to children and family entertainment will be provided by Eagles Cheerleaders and team mascot, SWOOP.
“This is a very special day for our community because so many children benefit from the vital services offered at Give Kids Sight Day,” said Christina Weiss Lurie, President Eagles Youth Partnership, Eagles Social Responsibility. “Too many students who fail their state-mandated vision test do not receive the critical follow-up care that contributes to academic success and achievement inside the classroom. Give Kids Sight Day is intended to change that and on behalf of EYP, we are thankful to all the volunteers and partners who have dedicated their time, resources and services to this annual initiative.”
Interpreters in Spanish, Mandarin, Vietnamese and several other languages will also be on hand to assist families. For more information, call 215-563-5848, ext. 21 or visit www.pccy.org/sightday.