SINGAPORE: Tampines residents aged 40 to 60 can register for free eye screening through the Our Eyes for Life campaign by Nanyang Technological University students.
Regular screenings can catch the four major age-related eyes diseases in Singapore: Cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy (DR), and age-related macular degeneration (AMD). According to the Singapore Optometrists and Opticians Board (OOB), screenings should be done at least once every two years for those aged 40 to 60.
The four final-year students from the Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information were inspired to focus on eye health after realising that all of their parents suffered from some form of eye disease. Tampines was chosen as the pilot site as the Our Eyes for Life campaign is a collaboration with the GRC.
In a survey on 216 Tampines residents, 58 per cent had not attended an eye screening since they turned 40. Of the residents who do go for screenings, only 55 per cent followed the OOB's recommendation to do so at least once every two years.
Despite national efforts to fight diabetes, the survey found that only 31.5 per cent of the respondents were aware that diabetes affects vision.
“With many eye diseases not showing obvious symptoms during the early stages, eye screenings are vital for the early detection of such diseases," said Professor Ecosse Lamoureux, head of Health Services Research at the Singapore Eye Research Institute.
"We would recommend people aged 40 and above to go for eye screenings, especially if there is a history of eye diseases in the family," he said.
Free eye screenings for Tampines residents will be conducted in collaboration with the Singapore Optometric Association on Feb 24 at Tampines Mall, Open Plaza, level 4 from 10am to 5pm.
Excluding waiting time, each resident can expect to spend 10 to 15 minutes going through the four stations to assess the eyes' refractive error, check the eyes' internal pressure, detect the presence of abnormality, and examine the back of the eye. Residents should bring along their glasses or wear their contact lenses to the screening.
Registration forms are available at Our Tampines Hub, Public Service Centre, level 1, or click here to register online. Registration closes on Tuesday, Feb 20 at 6pm.