StEPS Clinics Testing Preschoolers’ Vision

Imogen Young getting her vision tested at the StEPS clinic.

 

CATCH UP clinics are on for vision screening for local four-year-old preschoolers who missed out on their 2020 eye checks due to COVID-19 through the Statewide Eyesight Preschooler Screening (StEPS) program.

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NSW was the first state or territory in Australia to implement universal screening for preschoolers.

The local StEPS team are providing the clinics in Coffs Harbour on November 13 and 24 and December 10 and 11.

The Mid North Coast Local Health District (MNCLHD) StEPS’s clinics are available at local Community Health Centres for children who may have missed out on vision screening in 2020 while the program was deferred for a few months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, or who may have been absent from their centre on the visit day.

The NSW Government invests more than $4 million annually in the StEPS program.

The local StEPS team is encouraging all parents to get their four-year-old children tested, either in the catch up clinics or at their preschool or day care centre.

Mid North Coast Local Health District (MNCLHD) StEPS Coordinator Wendy Mutton said early screening leads to optimal vision.

“It is critical that this screening is provided to four-year-olds before they start school to maximise clinical benefit and outcomes for children,” Mrs Mutton said.

“If a child has impaired vision, they may think this is normal as they don’t have a baseline to compare it to. This is why it is so vital your child is screened.”

StEPS screeners will visit all preschools and long day care centres in MNCLHD throughout the year, with all centres in the area to receive a visit by December.

Children who do not attend centres or are in home care can also access the free service.

To make an appointment to attend a StEPS catch-up clinic, please phone 6656 7061 or email MNCLHD-[email protected].

 

By Sandra MOON

 

Mid North Coast Local Health Clinics are running their free vision screening for preschoolers like Imogen Young, to assist them in optimal vision.

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