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The Global Economic Cost of Visual Impairment

Authored by Access Economics
Posted on June 14, 2010
Topic: Advocacy/Vision 2020
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An estimate of the economic impact of visual impairment (VI) in the global all-ages population, including the direct and indirect costs of VI, and the burden of VI on health. In this study, VI includes all people with a visual acuity (VA) less than 6/12.

This report comprises the following estimates:

  • prevalence of mild VI (6/18 ≤ VA < 6/12), moderate VI (6/60 ≤ VA < 6/18), and blindness (VA < 6/60) by World Health Organization (WHO) subregion and major cause in 2010;
  • the direct health care system costs of VI in each WHO subregion based on previous country studies and relative price adjustments, expressed in 2008 US dollars;
  • the indirect costs of VI in each WHO subregion disaggregated by productivity losses, informal care costs, and the deadweight welfare loss (DWL) or tax inefficiency associated with public funding of health care, expressed in 2008 US dollars;
  • the burden of disease, measured in disability adjusted life years (DALYs), of VI in each WHO subregion, disaggregated by years of life lost due to premature death (YLL) and healthy years of life lost due to disability (YLD);
  • and projections of the above outcomes to the year 2020.

AMD Alliance International commissioned Access Economics to create this report.

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