Each year, Americans make nearly a million doctor visits for eye infections (primarily keratitis), costing $175 million. That’s the estimate from a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) first of its kind study. The largest risk factor: Wearing contacts. CDC analyzed national databases of outpatient care centers and emergency rooms to develop the first national estimates of how much keratitis occurs in the United States. CDC experts found that Americans made an estimated 930,000 visits to doctor’s offices and outpatient clinics and 58,000 emergency room visits annually due to eye infections. Women were slightly more likely to be affected than men, accounting for 63 percent of office visits and about 55 percent of emergency room visits. The condition was spread relatively evenly across age groups. The report was published November 13 in CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
Great website to send your patients: Click here.
November 17 through 21, 2014, marks the first annual Contact Lens Health Week. To celebrate the week, CDC has developed a campaign to promote eye health, in collaboration with doctors, public health, eye care industry, and regulatory partners. By focusing on the best ways to wear and care for contact lenses, CDC hopes to help reduce the risk of eye infections and complications associated with poor contact lens hygiene in the estimated 38 million Americans who wear contact lenses. Read more.
For your own Contact Lens Health Week Toolkit from the CDC, click here.