MADISON, Wis. — The Wisconsin Optometric Association (WOA) joins the #2020EyeExam campaign to make eye health and vision care a national priority in 2020. WOA wants to underscore the importance of receiving an in-person comprehensive eye exam with an AOA doctor of optometry and make it part of their annual health care routine.

“Good vision is essential to quality of life and a comprehensive eye exam is an important, preventive way to preserve vision and help maintain overall health,” says Dr. Amber Dentz, 2020 Wisconsin Optometric Association (WOA) president and Hartland, Wis., area optometrist. “With over sixteen million Americans struggling with undiagnosed or untreated vision impairments, Dr. Dentz is excited to partner with the American Optometric Association (AOA) and join the #2020EyeExam campaign to address this issue.”

A recent AOA survey revealed that many respondents were not aware of how vision impacts overall health. Only 53% visit an eye health professional at least once a year, and one-third of those surveyed lacked an understanding of how to take care of their eyes and vision.

Eye health and vision problems may develop without any obvious signs or symptoms. In-person, annual eye exams with doctors of optometry can detect early signs of visual system diseases such as glaucoma, a leading cause of blindness. In addition, exams safeguard overall health by detecting health conditions including diabetes, high blood pressure, autoimmune diseases and cancer.

As with many systemic diseases, most eye diseases, if detected early, may be treated before detrimental effects on the health and vision can take place. If a problem is detected, doctors of optometry help patients and their families navigate to the right prevention plans or the next steps in official diagnosis and treatment.

“WOA and other organizations joining the #2020EyeExam campaign are leading a public health mobilization initiative to address the current eye health and vision challenges facing America today,” AOA president, Barbara L. Horn, O.D., states. “Together we are setting a clear path for our nation’s eye health and vision by recognizing the importance of getting an annual, comprehensive eye exam with an AOA doctor of optometry.”

People may visit http://www.woa-eyes.org/members for a list of licensed eye doctors in your area.