Socioeconomic disparities linked to use of eye care

Socioeconomic disparities linked to use of eye care
People with age-related eye disease such as cataracts or glaucoma are less likely to see an eye care provider if they are in a low socioeconomic position, according to research published online July 18 in JAMA Ophthalmology.

(HealthDay)—People with age-related eye disease such as cataracts or glaucoma are less likely to see an eye care provider if they are in a low socioeconomic position, according to research published online July 18 in JAMA Ophthalmology.

Xinzhi Zhang, M.D., Ph.D., from the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md., and colleagues analyzed data from individuals in the United States at least 40 years old with self-reported age-related to examine the association between socioeconomic position and use of eye care services. Data from the National Health Interview Survey were analyzed from 2002 (3,586 individuals) and 2008 (3,104 individuals).

Using the poverty-income ratio, the researchers found that after adjusting for other factors, those with a ratio less than 1.50 were significantly less likely than those with a ratio of at least 5 to report visiting an eye care provider (62.7 versus 80.1 percent) or report undergoing a dilated eye examination in the past year (64.3 versus 80.4 percent). Those with less than a high school education were also significantly less likely than those with a college education to report either activity. The slope index of in both 2002 and 2008 showed significant differences for eye care provider visits across educational levels and additionally in poverty-income ratio in 2008.

"Significant differences in the use of eye care services by socioeconomic position persist among U.S. adults with eye diseases," Zhang and colleagues conclude.

More information: Abstract
Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

Related Stories

Refractive errors affect vision for half of American adults

Aug 11, 2008

About half of U.S. adults age 20 and older have refractive errors, or eye problems that result in less than 20/20 vision, according to a report in the August issue of Archives of Ophthalmology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. ...

Recommended for you

Stem cells have potential to repair diseased corneas

1 hour ago

Corneal transplant (keratoplasty) is a known means of successfully treating corneal disease. However, without unlimited donor corneas, researchers say there is a need to study alternate methods of treatment ...

New glaucoma culprit is found

Sep 15, 2014

Glaucoma, a leading cause of irreversible blindness, is associated with elevated pressure in the eye. This elevated pressure essentially is due to a plumbing problem. Fluid builds up in the eye, increasing ...

New glaucoma cause discovered

Sep 09, 2014

Northwestern Medicine scientists have discovered a novel cause of glaucoma in an animal model, and related to their findings, are now developing an eye drop aimed at curing the disease. They believe their ...

User comments