Temporal trends in the prevalence of spectacle use and spectacle coverage in India


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Abstract

BackgroundThis study aims to assess the temporal trends in the prevalence of spectacle use and spectacle coverage for refractive errors in population-based studies conducted during 2011–2012 and 2017 among those aged ≥ 40 years in the state of Telangana, India. An intervention in the form of 10 vision centres and a secondary centre was established in one district (Khammam) after the 2011–2012 study and another district (Warangal) was left to secular trends.MethodsIn both the studies, multi-stage cluster random sampling methodology was used to select the participants. In addition to a clinical examination, a questionnaire was used for collecting information on current and previous use of spectacles, type of spectacles and details of the spectacle providers. The same questionnaire was used in both the studies.ResultsIn total, 2,485 participants were examined in the 2011–2012 study and 2,711 participants were examined in the 2017 study in Khammam. Similarly, 2,438 and 2,646 participants were examined in Warangal in the two studies, respectively. In Khammam, the age and gender-adjusted prevalence of current spectacle use increased from 30.0 per cent (95% CI 28.2–31.9) to 34.8 per cent (95% CI 33.0–36.6) in the 2011–2012 and 2017 studies, respectively (p < 0.01). However, in the Warangal district, the age and gender-adjusted prevalence of current spectacle use declined from 32.8 per cent (95% CI 31.0–34.7) to 27.6 per cent (95% CI 25.9–29.3) during the 2011–2012 and 2017 studies, respectively (p < 0.01). In Khammam, the spectacle coverage increased from 26.9 per cent to 35.6 per cent, but it declined from 43.8 per cent to 35.7 per cent in Warangal between the studies in 2011–2012 and 2017.ConclusionsAn increase in spectacle use and coverage was observed in Khammam where the secondary centre and vision centres were established, compared to Warangal where there was no such intervention. The results suggest a positive impact of the intervention in the Khammam district and suggest replication of the model to address the burden of uncorrected refractive errors.

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