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New England College of Optometry Participates in Children’s Vision Summit

November 7, 2016 Faculty and staff from New England College of Optometry, NECO, joined over 300 attendees at the recent Children’s Vision Massachusetts 2016 Summit meetings in eastern and western Massachusetts. The Summit was sponsored by Children’s Vision Massachusetts, a 70 member, multidisciplinary coalition coordinated by Prevent Blindness, Northeast Region. The Eastern MA event took place at the Boston Children’s Museum while the Western MA event was held at the Whitney Conference Center in Holyoke, Massachusetts.

Several faculty and staff from the College volunteered and presented at the event, joining optometrists, ophthalmologists, educators, parents, pediatricians, nurses, legislators, and public health professionals. Speakers included representatives from New England College of Optometry, Boston Medical Center, Boston University School of Medicine, Reach Out and Read, Haverhill Public Schools, Health Care for All, Community Catalyst, Baystate Medical Center, Baystate Children’s Hospital, Harvard Graduate School of Education, Davis Foundation, and Campaign for Grade-Level Reading.

The summit focused on, “Vision and Learning: Making the Connection.” This included results of the recently published NIH-funded research study, “Uncorrected Hyperopia and Pre-School Literacy: Results of Vision in Preschoolers- Hyperopia in Preschoolers,” which reports a significant correlation between the status of a young child's vision health and his or her ability to acquire early literacy skills.   Programs included a presentation of these findings by Bruce Moore, OD, Professor at New England College of Optometry, and discussion of how to respond to them from a clinical, educational, and policy perspective. In addition, recognition awards were presented to organizations and institutions dedicated to the vision of the Children's Vision Massachusetts Coalition that all children have the opportunity to develop their best possible vision. 

Priscilla Kelangi, Manager of Communications and Resource Development at Prevent Blindness, Children's Vision Massachusetts, explained that New England College of Optometry, “was recognized as a community partner for its commitment and accomplishments related to improving vision health outcomes for children.” Accepting the award were Dr. Stacy Lyons, Professor at New England College of Optometry, and Paulette Tattersall, Pediatric Director for the Mobile Clinic at New England Eye. President Scott, Dean DiMartino, Drs. Gary Chu, Tony Cavallerano, Erik Weissberg, Gayathri Srinivasan, Sarah Wassnig and other leaders at the College were present to support the great work done to support children’s vision health.

Kathy Mazjoub, RN, MBA, Director, Northeast Region for Prevent Blindness, Children’s Vision Massachusetts, noted, “Both events were extraordinarily successful in regards to forming new partnerships, sharing information regarding new research results from NECO faculty researchers, raising awareness about vision and learning, and providing a strong legislative presence including Representatives Barber, Velis, and Vegas and Senate President Rosenberg.” Senate President Stan Rosenberg gave remarks at Western MA event and Representative Christine Barber spoke at the Eastern MA event on Needs and Strategies to Improve Children’s Vision and Eye Health.

All photo credit: Priscilla Kelangi
For more photos of the Summit:

About New England College of Optometry

New England College of Optometry, NECO, is an independent graduate college of optometry that educates students for careers in eye care delivery, research and education. For over 130 years, the New England College of Optometry has been educating optometrists and leaders in the field. Originally founded in 1894 as the Klein School of Optics, NECO prepares the next generation of eye care providers, educators, leaders, and innovators through a rigorous curriculum and extensive clinical experiences. Through a vast network of clinical affiliations, our students put patient care first, providing vision care to children, older adults, the homeless, and individuals with disabilities through our mobile eye clinic, satellite clinics in schools, homeless shelters, community health centers, and VA medical centers.

Media Contact: Ingrid Hoogendoorn, Director of Communications
phone: 617-587-5722