About Indigenous Eye Health
Indigenous Eye Health (IEH) was established in 2008 at the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health to undertake world-leading research that has established an evidence-base and policy framework to address Indigenous eye health in Australia.
IEH aims to Close the Gap for Vision for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population through world-leading research, policy formation, advocacy and implementation. IEH is currently actively engaged in:
An Advisory Board oversees the work of IEH and provides overarching advice, direction on work, guidance on funding, and advice as to how data collected can be used to implement policy change.
The work of IEH is generously supported by a number of private donors, philanthropic trusts, and the Australian Government Department of Health.
IEH develops a number of other technical reports and reports in response to stakeholder Roundtables and Forums.
The Roadmap to Close the Gap for Vision
Indigenous Eye Health (IEH) undertook The Roadmap to Close the Gap for Vision project to review health service provision and develop a model of eye care for Indigenous Australians for presentation to the Australian Government.
The project outcomes are documented in The Roadmap to Close the Gap for Vision, released in 2012, which includes a sector-endorsed, evidence-based, whole-of-system framework that collectively seeks to address Indigenous eye health inequity and Close the Gap for Vision.
Annual Update Reports
Each year, IEH produces an update on progress to implement the Roadmap to Close the Gap for Vision. Progress on all 42 recommendations is updated.
Diabetes Eye Care
Indigenous people with diabetes form 72% of those needing eye care each year so they are an essential group to engage with. Up to 98% of the vision loss from diabetes can be prevented with annual eye examinations and timely treatment.
Indigenous Eye Health (IEH) at The University of Melbourne has undertaken an engaging, community-driven process to develop eye health promotion resources focusing on eye care for those with diabetes to raise the awareness and knowledge of the prevention of diabetes related eye conditions and the importance of annual eye examinations
The specific objectives of this work are to:
- Increase the awareness and knowledge of the prevention of diabetes related eye conditions and the importance of annual eye examinations
- Increase the awareness and knowledge of the availability and accessibility of eye health services
- Increase the knowledge and awareness of health professionals in prevention, identification and referral pathways for diabetes related eye health conditions
- Support and improve the capacity of organisations to deliver locally appropriate eye communication and awareness
Trachoma is the leading cause of infectious blindness in 42 of the world's poorest countries.
Australia is the only developed country in the world to still have active trachoma in remote Indigenous communities. Trachoma is most often found in small children but scarring and in turned eye lashes are found in older people throughout the country. Trachoma persists in areas with poor personal and community hygiene.
In 2010, IEH coordinated the development of the Trachoma Story Kit, a comprehensive kit that includes flipcharts, guidelines and student resources that can be used by clinics, schools and community groups to provide clear and consistent messages about trachoma, how it is spread and how everyone can help to eliminate it.
Milpa the Trachoma Goanna
Diabetes Eye Care Training & Resources
- Diabetic Retinopathy Screening Card (for health professionals)A basic screening tool for diabetic retinopathy for health professionals conducting to use during an eye check to help determine appropriate referral and follow-up.
- Diabetic Retinopathy Grading CourseThis course is organised in several parts and includes practice quiz sessions for each. A final competency-based exam evaluates the ability to accurately detect and grade diabetic retinopathy and macular edema.
- Remote Area Health Corps RAHC Eye Health and Diabetes Module
- Remote Area Health Corps RAHCDiabetes eLearning Module [Video]
Trachoma Training & Resources
Below you will find the various publications issued by Indigenous Eye Health over the years along with supporting materials. This includes all of our past reports, journal articles, media, and more.
Indigenous Eye Health and Katherine West Health Board have partnered together with Aboriginal comedian Sean Choolburra for the upcoming Katherine West Health Board Health Fest 2016. Sean will be conducting school and evening comedy performances in eight communities in the Katherine West region from 17th to 28th September. The festival promotes keeping faces clean to stop trachoma and tobacco smoking reduction.News
On 25 July 2016, Indigenous Eye Health at the University of Melbourne hosted ‘Non-mydriatic retinal photography - a roundtable in preparation for new MBS items for people with diabetes’. This meeting brought together representatives from peak national bodies across Australia, covering Indigenous health, eye care and diabetes, to discuss approaches and actions necessary to support the successful introduction of new Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) items for non- mydriatic retinal photography (NMRP) for people with diabetes. Participants were provided with updates including currently available information and resources, discussed the barriers and solutions to increase diabetic retinopathy (DR) screening rates in Aboriginal Medical Services (AMS) and mainstream practices, and identified some of the next steps for implementation. Thirty-one people attended the meeting representing fourteen organisations.Download ReportNews
3 New Trachoma 'Clean Faces, Strong Eyes... Read more