Visibility Vol 10 Issue 1 & 2, 2016

Low vision Case Reports - The Virginia Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired

By presenting two low vision case reports from the Virginia Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired (DBVI), I hope to give some insight into the approach taken by DBVI when coordinating low vision rehabilitation, as well as demonstrate the unique expectations DBVI places upon the low vision examiner. DBVI is a single-payer, non-profit state system based out of six regional offices. Any Virginia resident with a functional vision impairment that is not correctable with contact lenses or glasses is eligible for services. The costs of these services are paid through taxation. Material aids are generally provided at wholesale cost, (or through taxation if the resident is financially eligible). Services are coordinated for each client by their individually assigned case managers, who are generally vision rehabilitation teachers, but can also be vocational rehabilitation counselors or teachers of the visually impaired. They are trained and continually evaluated by the department. They provide an initial in-home functional vision assessment and make referrals as necessary to orientation and mobility instructors, assistive technology specialists, and low vision examiners.

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