The importance and state of medical and public health research related to vision in Australia
AuthorMcCarty, Catherine A.; Keeffe, Jill E.; Livingston, Patricia M.; Taylor, Hugh R.
Source TitleAustralian & New Zealand Journal of Ophthalmology
AffiliationMedicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences: Centre for Eye Research Australia
School of Medicine: Ophthalmology
Document TypeJournal (Paginated)
CitationsMcCarty, C. A., Keeffe, J. E., Livingston, P. M., & Taylor, H. R. (1996). The importance and state of medical and public health research related to vision in Australia. Australian & New Zealand Journal of Ophthalmology, 24, 3-5.
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It has been shown that health research is fundamental to maintaining a high-quality, cost-effective health care system, and that biomedical research can ultimately realise huge cost savings to the national health care budget. Priorities for illness prevention and health promotion should be based on research-based information about the public health significance of health problems, the theoretical preventability of the health problems and the relative cost-effectiveness of individual preventive measure. Diabetic retinopathy is one eye condition that has been comprehensively studied in these three areas. Results from research conducted in the United States have shown that diabetic retionopathy is the leading cause of blindness in working-age adults, that early screening and treatment is highly efficacious in preventing vision loss, and that primary and secondary prevention are cost effective. The significant research resources required to understand diabetic retinopathy to this extent will be returned in the form of improved vision and heatlh care savings. Further resources are needed to better understand the other major contributors to vision loss in the community - cataract, glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration and ocular trauma.
KeywordsCERA; ophthalmology; Centre for Eye Research Australia; eye research; vision; visual health
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