DALLAS—Essilor Vision Foundation is combining technology and philanthropy to help people in need get the vision care and eyeglasses they need. The non-profit recently launched Changing Life through Lenses, a first-of-its-kind charitable solution equipping eyecare providers across the U.S. with the tools they need to eliminate poor vision among the underserved in their communities.

Since Changing Life through Lenses was launched in September, over 1,000 doctors have activated through this platform, supporting patients with 30,000 pairs of glasses, the organization said. Christine Chmielewski, RN, OD, FVI, practices in Philadelphia and said, “A friend, who is also an OD, and I have been using Changing Life through Lenses to provide glasses to the homeless in Philadelphia. We have felt drawn to help this population on a volunteer basis for a long time and now with the help of Essilor Vision Foundation, we can provide them with no-cost quality vision correction.

“Often those who are materially poor do not have many choices, so we’re thrilled to have such a terrific selection of stylish and quality frames to offer them. It is wonderful that EVF stepped up to allow doctors to be able to provide eyecare and glasses for those without many resources. And you have made it so easy.”

The Changing Life through Lenses website offers:

  • Real-time account creation – Registration takes less than five minutes. After creating an account, participants have immediate access to order frames to come, uncut or frame and lens products, along with all resources on the site.

  • Complete pairs of glasses – The ability to order complete pairs of glasses (frame and lens) for qualifying patients at no cost.

  • Dynamic routing – There is no lab assignment and orders are routed across multiple labs to increase efficiency in production of glasses.

  • Lens selection – While lens selection is primarily single vision polycarbonate or flat-top 28 bifocals, special order process is available for other medically necessary lenses or treatments.

  • Frame collection – Accounts may request a free frame collection that includes 30 styles, most with alternate colors, giving patients 57 options to choose from, from eye size 42 to 58.

  • Simple user experience – The platform is simple to use, offering visual icons, hover hints and tips so volunteers or multiple team members can enter orders for the account.

  • Referral and voucher tracking – Orders incorporate the ability to capture vouchers for formalized programs already developed or track referrals from national agencies.

  • Centralized resources – All resources are centralized to support participants’ needs, whether it’s access to rental portable examination equipment or a guide on how to set up a local vision event.

  • Audit features – The site incorporates necessary audit features such as validating National Provider Identifier (NPI) or license number, and provides documentation required for an annual forecast/pledge for charity work.
The website also has the ability to process all of the providers’ charity orders on the same account, whether received through a referral group, health agency or part of their practice’s initiatives.

“Good vision should not be out of reach for anyone. There is a veritable solution for 80 percent of vision impairments and that is a pair of glasses,” said Becky Palm, president and executive director of Essilor Vision Foundation.

“Getting exams and glasses to those most in need continues to be a priority for Essilor Vision Foundation as we focus on addressing the barriers to vision care—lack of awareness, access or affordability. Eye doctors are the champions of good vision in their communities, and we created Changing Life through Lenses to help them offset costs and expand their charitable outreach so they can directly engage with the population most in need.”

ECPs can learn more about the program and register at changinglifethroughlenses.org.

Essilor Vision Foundation announced this week that it has donated one million pairs of glasses to people in need around the U.S. since it began operating in 2007.

Essilor Vision Foundation is celebrating this milestone by launching a year-long "One Million Magic Moments” campaign to address the 10 million children in the U.S. who live with blurred vision every day, Essilor Vision Foundation encourages eyecare professionals, teachers, parents and their communities to become advocates for vision care to help millions more. Every dollar donated as part of the “One Million Magic Moments” campaign helps a child experience his or her own magic moments with clear vision. For every $50 donated, Essilor Vision Foundation can provide both a vision exam and a pair of glasses to a child in need at no cost to their family. Those
wishing to support the campaign can donate at www.evfusa.org/OneMillion.