color chooserblueRedGreenOrangePurple
Font ResizeFont DecreaseRevert font size to defaultIncrease font size
OOPS. Your Flash player is missing or outdated.Click here to update your player so you can see this content.
You are here: Home

Search within the Web Portal Punarbhava
Loading...
India changes blindness definition, opts WHO criteria PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 24 April 2017 11:33

New Delhi, Apr 19 (PTI) India has changed its over four- decade-old definition of blindness, bringing it in line with the WHO criteria, a step that would drastically bring down the number of people considered "blind" in the country

According to the new definition, a person who is unable to count fingers from a distance of three metres would be considered "blind" as against the earlier stipulation of six metres, which was adopted in 1976

The aim of revising the definition is also to be able to generate data which can be compared with global estimates and achieve the WHO goal of reducing the blindness prevalence of India to 0.3 per cent of the total population by 2020

The notification in this regard has been issued by the Union Health Ministry

Going by the new definition, the population of blind people in India will reduce from 1.20 crore (as per National Blindness survey 2007 data) to 80 lakh.

"Because of the earlier definition, we were projecting a higher figure of blind people from India at any international forum, presenting ourselves in poor light.

"Also, the data that we generated under the programme could not be compared with the global estimates as other countries were following the WHO definition," said Dr Promila Gupta, Deputy Director General of National Programme for Control of Blindness (NPCB).

Further, India has to achieve the goal set by the WHO which recommends reducing the prevalence of blindness to 0.3 per cent by 2020 to achieve the elimination of avoidable blindness.

"It would have been extremely difficult to achieve the WHO goal using the earlier NPCB definition since we had been addressing an extra 4 million (40 lakh) individuals blind due to refractive errors. Whereas, by adopting the blindness criteria of WHO, India now can achieve the goal," said Professor Praveen Vashist, in-charge Community Ophthalmology at Dr R P Centre for Ophthalmic Sciences, AIIMS

Also, the name of the scheme, 'National Programme for Control of Blindness' has been changed to 'The National Programme for Control of Blindness and Visual Impairment'

"The programme, henceforth, will not only focus on the blind persons but also those with some kind of visual impairment. With the change in nomenclature, the number of beneficiaries will now increase to 40 million," Dr Vashist added

The previous definition of blindness was adopted at the time of the inception of the NPCB in 1976

"The probable reason for keeping 6 metres as the cut off distance for defining blindness in India was to include economic blindness cases which referred to a level of blindness which prevents an individual to earn his or her wages

"In contrast, the WHO definition adopts a criteria for blindness that is which hampers the routine social interaction of a person (social blindness)," Gupta said.

Source: Press Trust of India (PTI)

 

Quick Links and Latest Updates

Schemes Empanelment of more hospitals for cochlear implant surgery under ADIP scheme - May 5, 2016 | The National Trust - Prerna | Sambhav (Aids and Assistive Devices) | National Trust Scheme Management System | 2500 Scholarships for Students with Disabilities 2016-17
For Hearing Impaired Test your Hearing | Jobs
Resources Promoting Inclusive Teacher Education Series | Open File on Inclusive Education | Inclusion From The Start | Indian Sign Language Interpreters Directory | Guidelines for Assessment of Extent of Disability and Certification of Specified Disabilities
Legal Instruments Rights of PwDs Act 2016 | Guidelines for PwDs to respect the National Anthem | Draft RPwD Rules 2017 | New Central Sector Plan Scheme of Free Coaching for Students with Disabilities | DoPT Instructions regd. reservation for persons with benchmark disabilities Jan 15, 2018New
Punarbhava Acknowledgements UNESCO Global Report | Planning Commission, GoI's Working Group Report on Science and Technology for Vulnerable Sections of Society | Digital Review of Asia Pacific 2009-10
Misc. Accessibility Statement | Punarbhava Poster | District Information System for Education | Unique Disability ID (UDID) | ISL Dictionary | Vision Document - 2030 DEPwDs | ISLRTC - List of Deaf Schools | Notification - Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act 2017 | Scholarships for Students with Disabilities | National Awards for Empowerment of PwDs 2017 | Global IT Challenge for Youth with DisabilitiesNew

Valid W3C XHTML 1.0 Transitional Valid CSS