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HomeminewsVote CERA Today to Win Google Award

Vote CERA Today to Win Google Award

The Centre for Eye Research Australia (CERA) is one of ten organisations hoping to secure $750,000 of research funding when the public casts its final votes tomorrow (25 October) in the 2016 Google Impact Challenge.

As a top ten finalist in the 2016 Google Impact Challenge, CERA’s project ‘Vision at Home’ has already secured $250,000 for research, but four of the ten finalists will receive a total of $750,000 and one will be judged through a people’s choice vote. The results will be announced on Wednesday 26 October.

“Our project is a technology-driven and simple-to-use online solution for those who live far away from eye specialists,” said Professor Mingguang He, Principal Investigator at CERA and Professor of Ophthalmic Epidemiology at the University of Melbourne.

“It has the potential to help millions of people not only in Australia but all around the world.
“With your vote CERA could win $750,000 and translate this technology to community and population benefit,” said Professor He.

Dr. William Yan, who worked with Professor He to pitch the project to Google, will present ‘Vision at Home’ to Google on October 26.

“Vision at Home is an evidence-based software and algorithm that combines a webcam and internet to provide a method for patients to test their eyesight anywhere, instead of attending a clinic,” said Dr. Yan.

“Visual impairment has a great impact on quality of life for many Australians but owing to our vast continent we don’t know where all the cases of eye disease are. We want to overcome that with technology.”

The largest challenge to preventable eye disease is the lack of access to eye care services in primary healthcare settings, particularly in regional, remote and Indigenous communities. The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare estimates over 600,000 Australians live with vision impairment, a number projected to increase to one million by 2024.

“94 per cent of blindness or vision loss in Indigenous Australians is preventable or treatable,” said Dr. Yan.
“Vision at Home will bring accurate vision testing to areas with poor access and benefit groups with great potential for sight-saving interventions, including children, the elderly and Indigenous Australians. It will also be used overseas in remote locations.”

CERA plans to trial the technology with post-operative patients from the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, with elderly and mobility-impaired patients across Victoria, and in schools across indigenous communities.
Voting is open until October 25 at impactchallenge.withgoogle.com/australia2016/charity/cera