In part two of her series on assistance tools for low vision patients, Connie Angeli explores four innovative solutions and how they serve people at different stages of their life.
Low vision is a visual impairment that cannot be fully corrected by spectacles, contact lenses, or other forms of medical care. It affects many aspects of life, such as reading, working, and socialising. It can be caused by various eye diseases, such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), diabetic retinopathy (DR), glaucoma, and cataracts. Different user groups face different needs and challenges when it comes to low vision.
“Seniors, students, and professionals are among the many people impacted by low vision, influencing their quality-of-life and productivity.”
• Seniors: As they age, seniors are more likely to develop eye diseases that impair their vision. This can limit their ability to perform daily activities, recognise faces, and enjoy hobbies. They may need devices that can magnify text, adjust contrast, and provide speech feedback.
• Students: Students with low vision may struggle to keep up with their academic demands. They may have difficulty reading textbooks, taking notes, and participating in class. They may need devices that can scan and read documents, display enlarged images, and record lectures.
• Professionals: Professionals with low vision may face barriers to their career advancement. They may have difficulty reading written materials, operating computers, or communicating with coworkers and customers. They may need devices that can connect to their computers, smartphones, or TVs, and provide high-definition magnification and text-to-speech.
To help patients overcome their challenges and regain their visual independence, there are various solutions available in the market. Some examples are explorē 12, explorē 8, explorē 5, and Reveal 16i. These devices are designed to provide high-quality magnification, contrast enhancement, and speech output for people with low vision. They are portable, easy to use, and adaptable to different situations.
explorē 12, explorē 8, explorē 5 and Reveal 16i are versatile assistive technologies designed to cater to the unique needs of people living with low vision.
This is a powerful electronic magnifier designed to assist seniors, students, and professionals alike. With a large 12-inch touchscreen display, it provides a wide range of magnification and contrast options, catering to specific needs of each user group.
Seniors: explorē 12 makes it simple for seniors to read books, newspapers, and prescription labels. These features enable them to continue managing daily duties independently.
Students: explorē 12 is valuable for reading textbooks, taking notes, and accessing educational materials. Its portability makes it suitable for classroom use.
Professionals: Professionals can benefit from explorē 12’s large display and high-resolution magnification. It aids them in reading documents, taking notes, and maintaining their workflow.
This is a compact and portable electronic magnifier, making it an ideal choice for seniors, students, and professionals who are always on the move.
Seniors: Can carry the explorē 8 with them, ensuring they can access printed materials wherever they go. This promotes independence and social engagement.
Students: The explorē 8 can help students remain engaged in the learning process by allowing them to magnify and read class materials effortlessly, whether in the classroom or at home.
Professionals: Professionals can stay productive with the explorē 8, using it to access documents, read reports, and manage their tasks efficiently, both in the office and during travel.
This is a cost-effective handheld electronic magnifier designed to offer quick and convenient access to enlarged text and images. It’s well-suited for seniors, students, and professionals with low vision.
Seniors: explorē 5 can be easily carried and used for tasks like reading prescription labels, menus, and other printed materials, enhancing seniors’ daily living.
Students: explorē 5 can help magnify printed texts in textbooks, class notes, and assignments, ensuring they don’t miss out on educational content.
Professionals: explorē 5 can assist in reading business documents, invoices, and contracts, ensuring they remain efficient in their work.
With its document scanning and text-to-speech capabilities, Reveal 16i is suitable for seniors, students, and professionals looking to convert printed materials into accessible content.
Seniors: It helps seniors regain their independence by allowing them to scan and listen to printed materials, from letters to recipe cards.
Students: Can scan textbooks and printed assignments, turning them into accessible audio content, making studying more manageable.
Professionals: Professionals can scan business documents, articles, and reports, ensuring they stay on top of their professional responsibilities.
Seniors, students, and professionals are among the many people impacted by low vision, influencing their quality-of-life and productivity. These user groups may regain their visual autonomy and experience a higher quality-of-life with the aforementioned technologies. These assistive devices fill a gap caused by low vision and the open door towards brighter futures by empowering users to read, work, and engage in daily activities with confidence.
As technology advances, the future for everyone with low vision appears more promising than ever.
About the author: Connie Angeli has more than 34 years of experience as an optical dispenser, practice manager, educator, and assistive technology solution provider. She is HumanWare’s National Sales Manager for Australia and New Zealand and an Advisory Board Member for Optical Dispensers Australia.