In observation of Healthy Vision Month, the Port Huron campus staff made it their goal to educate students about proper eye health. The campus decided on three projects for the month: conducting a donation drive, putting together an eye health information board, and hosting a guest speaker.
At the start of the month, the campus began to collect gently used sunglasses, prescription glasses, and reading glasses to donate to Eyes of Hope, a program sponsored by VSP Global. Through Eyes of Hope and the Eye Make a Difference donation program, VSP Global provides funding for mobile clinics to serve those who cannot travel to see a doctor, offer gift cards to those who can’t afford care, fund scholarships for optometry students, and support schools of optometry to ensure continuing advancements in the field.
With the donation drive under way, the next step was to provide more general information to students about how they can care for their eyes. The staff decided to put up different facts about eye health throughout the month on the bulletin board in the student lounge. Tips that were shared with students include:
- Work on controlling blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels. Keeping your blood glucose, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels low helps to keep your eyes and the rest of your body healthy.
- Try to take regular breaks when working in front of a computer. Staring at the computer causes eye strain, and tired eyes and can cause long-term damage to your vision. Incorporate regular breaks and try some eye exercises to relax your eye muscles.
- Smoking damages your whole body, including the blood vessels that supply blood and nutrients to your eyes. If you are a smoker, it is not too late to improve your eye health by quitting.
Finally, the campus welcomed Dr. Kamal Fahim, M.D., ophthalmologist and owner of Port Huron Eye Institute. Medical Assistant instructor Brittany Taylor works in Dr. Fahim’s office when she’s not teaching and invited him to speak to students in honor of the month’s theme.
“Dr. Fahim always makes learning a top priority and works to make sure all of his staff is well educated on the overall health of the eye, signs and symptoms to look for, and how to best help our patients,” said Brittany.
Dr. Fahim covered three key topics: the importance of maintaining eye health, how overall health impacts the eyes, and preventative measures that can reduce the risk of eye disease. Dr. Fahim also stressed the importance of regular eye exams so early detection and treatment can be made possible.
By the end of the month, the campus donated 20 pairs of glasses to Eyes of Hope. May was a successful month at the Port Huron campus, allowing students to both learn and contribute to a good cause. Campus Director Mia Vargo said, “We always try to highlight awareness months like Healthy Vision Month. They’re an opportunity for students to learn more about their our bodies and how to care for patients with a wide spectrum of needs.”