Vision Australia is urging people to use Orthoptics Awareness Week as an opportunity to find out how an orthoptist can support those living with vision loss.
The week, from March 5-9, celebrates the range of services orthoptists provide to people who are blind or have low vision.
For the Shepparton region, the week coincides with Vision Australia expanding its orthoptist team.
‘‘It is great that we can welcome our new orthoptist Regina Callegher to our team,’’ Vision Australia Murrumbidgee Hume regional business manager Helen Vey said.
‘‘For people who live in regional areas, having easy access to support services can make a huge difference to their lives.’’
Ms Callegher will act as a frontline staff member working with new clients during their vision assessments.
Her role involves providing advice about things such as magnification aids, lighting solutions, how people can best make use of their remaining vision and referring people to further support services.
Ms Vey said the earlier support services were accessed, the more effective they would be in allowing people who were blind or had low vision to remain safe, active and independent in the home and the community.
‘‘Whether it is occupational therapy, orientation or mobility services, having a vision assessment is an important first step towards a person accessing the service that will best support them,’’ she said.
Visit www.visionaustralia.org to find out more about Vision Australia’s orthoptists and other support services.