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ABO Diplomate Receives National Award for Championing Children's Eye Health

The National Center for Children's Vision and Eye Health at Prevent Blindness (NCCVEH) has named American Board of Ophthalmology Diplomate Anne L. Coleman, MD, PhD, as the recipient of the fifth annual Bonnie Strickland Champion for Children's Vision Award. The award recognizes significant efforts to improve children's vision and eye health at the state or national level and will be presented at the NCCVEH Annual Meeting on Sept. 14, 2019, in Baltimore, Md.

Dr. Coleman is the Fran and Ray Stark Foundation Professor of Ophthalmology at UCLA Stein Eye Institute of the David Geffen School of Medicine; Vice Chair, Academic Affairs, UCLA Department of Ophthalmology; Professor of Epidemiology in the UCLA Jonathon and Karin Fielding School of Public Health; Director of the Stein Eye Institute Center for Community Outreach and Policy and president-elect of the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

Dr. Coleman was selected for the award based on her efforts to improve children's vision through stakeholder engagement, resource development, and services to high-risk populations of children, specifically, through her work at the UCLA Mobile Eye Clinic (UMEC). Contributions to children's vision and eye health under Dr. Coleman's direction include:

  • Strengthening ties with program partners, community advocates and schools (including Head Start programs).

  • Screening a total of 90,000 preschool students in underserved communities through a grant from First 5 LA.

  • Expanding the reach of the UCLA Mobile Eye Clinic, now providing vision screening, eye exams and treatment in hundreds of locations including schools and Head Start Programs annually at no cost.

  • Creating educational materials, including videos and other materials for teachers, parents and caregivers in English and Spanish through a grant from UCLA Changemakers on the importance of eye care for preschool children.

  • Achieving increases in the follow-up rate of children accessing treatment and children wearing their eyeglasses.

  • Collaborating on a study of Return on Investment (ROI) on the social, environmental, and economic value created by the UCLA Mobile Eye Clinic.

The Bonnie Strickland Champion for Children's Vision Award was established by the NCCVEH Advisory Committee to commemorate Bonnie Strickland and her groundbreaking work to establish a comprehensive system for children's vision in the United States. Strickland served as Director of the Division of Services for Children with Special Health Needs, Maternal and Child Health Bureau prior to her retirement in 2014.

Past recipients of the Bonnie Strickland Champion for Children's Vision Award include the Vision in Preschoolers (VIP) Study Group, Richard T. Bunner, retired from the Ohio Department of Health, Dr. Sean Donahue, Vanderbilt University, the Illinois Eye Institute (IEI) at Princeton Vision Clinic based at the Illinois College of Optometry, and the Pediatric Physicians' Organization at Children's (PPOC) based at Boston Children's Hospital.

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