During the Games, athletes will be invited to have their eyes tested for free via the Special Olympics Lions Club Opening Eyes Program, coordinated by optometrist Dr. Susan Walton AO.
Dr. Walton said there are many reasons why eye screening is offered at the Games. “Sometimes an athlete’s glasses may be old and fragile. Sometimes… because of their intellectual disability, (the athlete hasn’t) been able to articulate the need. On the ground at the Games we can observe problems and work to correct them. The glasses we have made up can make all the difference to their performance.”
She said at the 2013 Special Olympics Asia-Pacific Games in Newcastle 768 athletes had their eyes examined and as a result, 140 spectacles were made up for competitors.
Dr. Walton said Monday 20 October, a sports free day when athletes are encouraged to attend the Healthy Athletes Program (HAP), would be the busiest day for the eye screening program, which
will run all week.
The HAP, which includes Opening Eyes, will be held at the Melbourne Sports and Aquatics Centre.
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