NIHR funds first UK-wide population study of all forms of childhood visual impairment

A new epidemiological study carried out with NIHR support shows that on average, three children in the UK are newly affected by a visual disability every day.

The recently published paper – the first of its kind in the UK – provides detailed information on the prevalence of different visual impairments, relationships with other conditions, associated mortality rates and links to socioeconomic background, ethnicity, premature birth and birth weight. The findings are vital for assessing the visual health of the population and planning effective health services.

The study, called the British Childhood Visual Impairment and Blindness Study 2, or ‘BCVIS2’, was published in the The Lancet Child and Adolescent Health. The research team, based at UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health (UCL GOS ICH), produced the paper in collaboration with the British Childhood Visual Impairment and Blindness Study Interest Group.

The lead author for the paper was Jugnoo Rahi, Professor of Ophthalmic Epidemiology at GOS ICH UCL and UCL Institute of Ophthalmology, who is an NIHR Senior Investigator.

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Child wearing glasses seen from the side