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14–20 September marks global AMD Awareness Week 2015. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a progressive eye disease, which is the leading cause of blindness in over 50s globally. AMD Awareness Week aims to increase public awareness of blindness, visual impairment and rehabilitation of people suffering from AMD and strives to empower patients with the information and resources to maintain healthy eyesight. This year’s theme is ‘Our Eyes Matter.’ The week is coordinated by the AMD Alliance, an international organisation dedicated to promoting awareness and knowledge about macular disease.
Events are taking place across the globe to mark AMD Awareness Week. The AMD Alliance will be holding a webinar to launch the awareness week on Monday 14 September. The webinar will be hosted by AMD Alliance Chairman Mr Mark Ackerman, alongside leading experts on macular degeneration. The link for registration is below. In the UK, the Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB) is launching a campaign called ‘See the need, demand the support,’ with the objective of ensuring that Eye Clinic Liaison Officers or Sight Loss Advisers are appointed in every eye department in UK hospitals to provide support to patients with sight loss. This campaign is being supported by Shirley Bassey, Barbara Windsor and Neo Morrissey.
Moorfields Eye Hospital in London will be running a series of educational events for patients, caregivers and the general public. In Ireland, a campaign called ‘Your Defining Moment’ will ask the public to share a defining moment: a decision or a choice that led to an unexpected positive outcome, but which impacted your life significantly. The campaign carries the message that choosing to have your eyes tested and look after your eye health could be Your Defining Moment.
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a progressive retinal disease, usually occurring at age 55 years or older. If untreated, AMD causes the loss of central vision, leaving only peripheral or side vision intact. A recent study estimated that 500,000 people in the UK are living with late stage AMD and are likely to have begun to lose their vision. In its early stages, AMD may not cause any noticeable symptoms, making regular eye exams vital, as early detection ensures that all treatment options remain available.
For more information about age-related macular degeneration, please visit: http://www.amdalliance.org/
Events taking place across the globe:
AMD Awareness Week Launch Event, 14 September, online: The AMD Alliance is holding a webinar to launch the week. Details are available at http://www.amdawarenessweek.org/news-events/amd-awareness-week-launch-event.html
See the need, demand the support: RNIB is running a campaign for the appointment of sight loss advisors in eye departments in UK hospitals. Details are available at http://www.rnib.org.uk/
Congressional Briefing, 17 September, Washington DC: This congressional briefing will report on research and therapies for AMD. Details are available at http://www.amdawarenessweek.org/news-events/congressional-briefing.html