Free Eyeglasses For Low-Income
Given the country’s state during these trying times, afford prescription glasses can seem out of reach for many low-income individuals. Along with the glasses themselves, additional costs, including the initial eye exam, greatly contribute to the overall cost.
Many programs throughout the United States offer free or discounted eye exams and prescription glasses to a wide range of low-income people. This article will cover a few of the resources available to start working towards a better vision today.
VSP Sight for Students
Sight for Students is a nationwide program to help low-income uninsured children with access to reliable eye care. This Vision Service Plan (VSP) connects doctors and charities in your community to assist children in receiving free prescription eyeglasses. These services are provided to eligible children under 19 years of age and are distributed in the form of a VSP Sight for the Students gift certificate.
To be eligible, children must come from a low-income family with an annual salary that meets or is below the 200% Federal Poverty Level guidelines. Eligible children must not be enrolled in any additional vision coverage plans through private or federal programs to receive aid from Sight for Students. These gift certificates are often initiated through your child’s school nurse. This ensures your child is a resident of the area attending a public school. How to Get Vision Care for Children in Need (vsp.com)
VSP Eyes of Hope
Another wonderful program offered by VSP Global, Eyes of Hope, reaches a broader spectrum of individuals requiring assistance to vision coverage. Much like Sight for Students, Eyes of Hope allocates gift certificates to low-income adults and children in hopes of establishing routine eye appointments and a set of prescription glasses. For individuals who already have vision coverage through an existing healthcare or government system, materials-only certificates are available to use towards lenses and frames.
Unlike Sight For Students, Eyes of Hope is available to low-income people of all ages who live in a family with an income at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level guidelines or suffer from a disability. This program is specifically designed to aid those who receive no vision coverage through their existing healthcare program or other forms of government aid that pertain to the uses of the gift certificate. More information: VSP Offers Gift Certificates for Eye Care and Eyeglasses (vspglobal.com)
VISION USA- The AOA Foundation
VISION USA is a non-profit organization that provides eye exams, eye care, and prescription glasses to low-income people who do not qualify for state or government assistance programs. VISION USA recruits thousands of doctors nationwide who volunteer their time to tend to the needs of those enrolled free of charge. Once an application has been accepted, qualified individuals will receive aid from a doctor within the community who receives a referral directly from VISION USA.
Applying for aid can be done directly through the VISION USA website. However, it is important to note that VISION USA has a limited supply of frames to allocate, and they may not always be available in your state. VISION USA « Optometry Cares – The AOA Foundation
New Eyes for the Needy
Since the conception of this not-for-profit organization in 1932, New Eyes for the Needy has regularly provided United States citizens with free prescription eyeglasses. This program is open to all low-income children and adults, along with those who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. This program does not cover eye exams and will require applicants to provide a recent eyeglass prescription along with their pupillary distance measurement.
Much like other low-income vision assistance programs, New Eyes for the Needy is designed for applicants who cannot afford eyeglasses due to their income, including aid from federally or statewide assistance programs. Money for eyeglasses is distributed through the voucher program. Once a voucher has been issued, accepted individuals can redeem this voucher at a participating optometrist in their city or state. New Eyes for the Needy (new-eyes.org)
Senior EyeCare Program
As we get older, our vision can oftentimes become worse, requiring new methods of treatment. For low-income seniors, this can be a stressful and expensive transition to the later years. Senior citizens over the age of 60 who have limited income or lack health insurance coverage for vision needs are eligible to receive aid from the Senior Eyecare Program. The Senior EyeProgram allows low-income seniors to undergo comprehensive vision tests that target common issues brought on by old age, such as glaucoma, cataracts, and macular degeneration.
Once the tests provide clear results, medical professionals provide all the necessary tools required for the situation, such as upgraded lenses, free frames, or surgery if needed. Seniors can also receive ongoing vision treatment for any diseases or problems diagnosed through the testing process. This program is intended for low-income seniors who have not had access to proper eye care in the past. For all eligibility requirements, be sure to visit the Seniors EyeCare Program website. How It Works – American Academy of Ophthalmology (aao.org)
The Start of a Clearer Future
Having access to prescription eyeglasses should never come down to income level. Proper eye care can go a long way in terms of health and overall happiness. Millions of Americans, old and young, do not have regular access to affordable vision care, calling for the need of these sensational companies determined to provide these services.
Being unable to afford eyeglasses can hinder the learning experience of children and cause future struggles for adults. Vital activities, such as driving a car, become severely dangerous without the proper prescription. With the world’s ever-changing landscape today, the need for free eyeglasses, tests, and annual care has risen greatly.
Taking advantage of the programs available in your area is the perfect place to start when working towards a clearer future. Need more assistance with low-income programs? You can apply for free wireless service through the Lifeline program or contact us for assistance and questions. Free Cell Phone Service With Government Program | StandUp Wireless