In the summer of 2019, 20/20 Vision For All visited Kota once again, this time screening 2 schools and a total of 389 students and gave out 83 pairs of glasses. At the Govt. Senior Secondary School for Girls in Borkheda, Kota 249 children were screened. At the Govt Secondary School in Jagpura, Kota 140 children were screened. These schools were selected to be screened and receive support from the program since they were determined to be at risk for high incidences of low vision.
In 2018, the program realized that a significant source of error was leaving the responsibility on guardians' of students to retrieve prescriptions and glasses for their children. Many times parents would have no means to get to the optometrist. Sometimes students, since they are children growing up in a society where glasses are stigmatized, do not inform their parents in an effort to avoid getting glasses.
In order to reduce this source of error, the program brought an autorefractor (Matronix Q 30+) which detected the prescriptions onsite. Combined with double checking the prescriptions using lenses, the program was able to provide glasses that were 100% effective to 100% of the students who needed them.
Figure 1. Above is the data from the eye screening camp at a government all girls school in Borkheda, Kota. In total, 51 out of 249 (20%) students needed received glasses, of which 4 students required follow up treatment from the eye hospital due to extreme cases of amblyopia, astigmatism etc.
Figure 2. The chart above represents the data from the eye screening camp at a government school in Jagpura, Kota. In all, 32 out of 140 (23%) of students needed glasses. There was no need for external treatment from the hospital here.
These two schools provided tremendous insight into how effective the program can become with the right tools. Upon receiving the autorefractor from our optometrist significant improvements were made allowing each child to receive the care they need. Additionally, they helped solidify that each school, on average, in poor regions of India have 20% of their student body as neglected.
Upon looking at each individual school, Borkheda showed high incidences of low vision; many students had very high prescription numbers (see fig. 1). The high numbers can be attributed to the fact that most of the individuals screened were female, and other data suggests that women in India tend to be more malnourished, however, this cannot be entirely confirmed without further investigation.
While the percentages for needing glasses was higher in Jagpura (see fig. 2), the students had significantly healthier eyes since all those who needed glasses had on average much lower prescription numbers than Borkheda.
Based off of these new found findings, we can work with schools to provide more aspects of sustainability in the future.