World Sight Day is an annual day of awareness held on the second Thursday of October, to focus global attention on vision impairment, including blindness. This year, World Sight Day will take place on October 14, 2021 with the theme: Love Your Eyes.
Globally, at least 1 billion people have near or distance vision impairment that could be prevented or has yet to be addressed. Vision impairment affects people of all ages, with the majority being over the age of 50. Vision impairment and blindness can have major and long-lasting effects on all aspects of life, including daily personal activities, interacting with the community, school and work opportunities and the ability to access public services.
Unoperated cataract and uncorrected refractive error are the leading causes of vision impairment. Other causes such as age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, infectious diseases of the eye, and trauma, however, cannot be ignored and need to be addressed.
Recently at the 74th World Health Assembly, Member States adopted two new global targets for eye care by 2030 ̶ a 40 per cent increase in effective coverage of refractive errors and a 30 per cent increase in effective coverage of cataract surgery. These targets will play a key role in not only increasing global eye care coverage in the future but also in delivering quality services.