Prevent Blindness Georgia

Bringing Americans to Eye Care

aka Prevent Blindness Georgia   |   Sandy Springs, GA   |  www.pbga.org

Mission

Prevent Blindness Georgia was founded in 1965 as the state affiliate of Prevent Blindness America, the nation's leading volunteer eye health and safety organization. Our mission is to prevent blindness and preserve sight for the residents of Georgia through vision screenings for children and adults, eye exams and glasses for indigent seniors, the homeless and working poor adults, public education on eye health and safety to persons at risk for eye disease, and vision screening training.

Ruling year info

1990

CEO

Jill Thornton

Main address

270 Carpenter Dr Suite 606

Sandy Springs, GA 30328 USA

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EIN

58-6050305

NTEE code info

Eye Diseases, Blindness and Vision Impairments (G41)

Public Health Program (E70)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Without significant intervention, Dr. Paul Sieving, Director of the National Eye Institute, a division of the National Institutes of Health, warns that the number of adults with blindness will double by the year 2050 to more than 8 million due to the aging of the population and the near epidemic growth in the incidence of diabetes. Nearly one-quarter of Georgians have diabetes and are unaware. Prevent Blindness Georgia (PBGA) works to identify those who have underlying health issues like diabetes or glaucoma that could, if untreated, lead to sight loss and blindness by providing free eye exams, screening, and eyeglasses to people on both ends of the age spectrum. Because 80% of what a young child learns, identifying children with vision problems is essential for children's academic and social success. In 2019, PBGA vision screened more than 40,000 of Georgia's young children, 42% of whom would not receive a vision test but for the free vision screening services that PBGA provides.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Vision Outreach

Prevent Blindness Georgia developed the Vision Outreach project to address basic eye care needs of homeless and working poor adults. All participants have an annual income at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level. The program provides vision screenings, eye exams, and eyeglasses for homeless and working poor adults on-site at shelters or agencies where they are served. Each year, close to 2,000 Georgia adults receive services through Vision Outreach at more than 30 agencies statewide. In this program Prevent Blindness Georgia partners with local agencies, such as homeless shelters, social service organizations and low-income clinics to provide vision services to their clients. Vision screening, eye examinations and eyeglass fittings are given at no cost to clients. Partner agencies provide or seek outside funding for low-cost eyeglasses. Participants who need treatment for eye disease receive consultation, referral and follow up calls to ensure care is given at a permanent medical facility.

Population(s) Served

With a mission of preventing blindness and preserving sight for all Georgians, Prevent Blindness Georgia vision screens more than 35,000 prekindergarten children each year through its Star Pupils program to ensure that these children are "vision ready" to learn. Approximately six percent of the children fail the screening and are referred to an eye care professional for further evaluation.

 

These vision screenings are conducted by certified vision screeners and cost about $6.50 a child. Funding for this statewide service comes from grants, fundraising events, and individual donors.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Affiliations & memberships

Prevent Blindness America 1965

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

The goals of Prevent Blindness Georgia (PBGA) are:

(1) To prevent unnecessary blindness by providing free vision screening and eye exams to children and adults who are vulnerable as a result of being low-income, uninsured, migrant, homeless or otherwise vulnerable.

(2) To ensure that all of Georgia's children are "vision ready" for school ensuring that all children can learn and succeed. Prevent Blindness Georgia (PBGA) strives to ensure that all of the state's young children have a vision screening before age 6.

(3) To help increase public awareness of the importance of eye health screening and safety to help all Georgians to protect their eyes and conserve sight.

(4) To reduce the economic impact of blindness. Prevent Blindness, with the assistance of researchers at the University of Chicago, has calculated that the immediate cost of blindness in the U.S. in 2013 was $145 billion and that it will grow to more than $717 billion in 2050 without intervention. The 2013 cost for Georgians of blindness was an estimated $1.14 billion.

(5) To leverage all available technology to advance the use of tele-health-type medical practices in eye care to make sure that as many Georgians are vision screened as possible.

Annually, Prevent Blindness Georgia provides more than $2 million in free vision services to the state’s under-served citizens, drawing on its 55-years of hard work and proven data-driven outcomes and best practices to carry out programs statewide while working for larger systemic change and health equity.

Through an eye screening and public education program called Star Pupils, PBGA provides eye screening for young Georgians in Title 1 Schools, lottery-funded pre-kindergartens, Head Starts, and some public and private preschools.

On the other end of the age spectrum, PBGA operates a Vision Outreach (VO) program which primarily involves temporary pop-up clinics throughout the state in Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) as well other free health clinics and outreach centers serving the homeless, migrants, those in transitional housing, domestic violence centers, addiction recovery services, and centers affiliated with the Area Agency on Aging.

To further combat the challenges in Georgia of an aging population and the growing incidence of diabetes, Prevent Blindness Georgia developed the Georgia Retinal Imaging Program (GRIP). This program multiples the number of clients the organization can serve because it allows for trained screeners to measure visual acuity and eye pressure as well as to photograph the back of the retina and transmit secure images and measurements to a volunteer ophthalmologist for assessment. The image is viewed by an ophthalmologist without the client having to actually see the physician in-person. Now in its tenth year, GRIP successfully identifies people in early to advanced stages of DR, glaucoma, cataracts, age-related macular degeneration, and other eye diseases associated with aging that, if left untreated, would result in blindness.

To further increase the number of children who can be screened for potential vision problems, PBGA offers a vision screening training and certification program to school nurses, public health nurses, pediatric practices, nursing students, prekindergarten resource workers, and volunteers. This increases the number of people who are properly trained to screen young children for vision problems.

For both adults and children, Prevent Blindness Georgia offers assistance in the fulfillment of prescription glasses. During the last year, the organization provided 5,965 pairs of prescription glasses to adults and numerous vouchers for free eyewear for children.

The organization also engages in year-round public health and safety campaigns to further awareness about glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, workplace eye safety, ultraviolet ray exposure, cataracts, sports safety, fireworks safety, diabetes, and more.

Prevent Blindness Georgia has 55 years of successful history vision screening children and adults and is an affiliate of a national organization that draws upon more than 100 years of best-practices, research and evaluation. As such, PBGA is a part of the only national vision screening and training certification program. The organization has partnerships with vision industry leaders that give the organization access to benefits for the constituents served. PBGA has long, well-established collaborative relationships with a large network of Federally Qualified Health Centers and community-based partners as well as preschools, Head Starts, and many city and county school systems which provide venues for the organization’s services and access to persons in need of eye health services. The organization also participates in state-wide vision and health collaboratives designed to coordinate vision care services for both adults and children. These collaboratives work to advance knowledge about collaborating partners’ services to increase access to care for Georgia’s residents and to reduce duplication of services to leverage and maximize resources. Further, PBGA contracts annually with the Georgia’s Department of Public Health to deliver specific deliverables and receives some support through the Drive for Sight campaign funded by voluntary donations of $1 made by Georgia citizens renewing their driver’s licenses.

PBGA is led by qualified professionals with decades of experience in the delivery of public health and in the management and leadership of nonprofit organizations. PBGA is governed by a volunteer board of directors that is comprised of business and community leaders as well as several eye care professionals and researchers who advise and guide the policy of the organization.

Financials

Prevent Blindness Georgia
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Prevent Blindness Georgia

Board of directors
as of 4/28/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

David Smith

Kearny Street Consulting

Term: 2019 - 2022

Kim Musierowic

Community Volunteer

David Smith

Kearny Street Consulting

Ninita Brown

Thomas Eye Group

Scott Bullock

GA Eye Partners

Gavin Cohen

Optique

Cindy Teyeskey-Gage

Salesforce

Tiffany Gough

Wallace Enterprises

Tolu Deitz

General Electric

Lativia Ray-Alston

Price Waterhouse Coopers

Phoebe Lenhart

Emory University School of Medicine

Arshia Payman

Derm Clinic

Jeanne Perrine

Community Volunteer

Sherry Perchik

Morgan Stanley

Rachel Skypek

Consilium Partner Group

Maceo Sloan

Merrill Lynch

Sandy Sullivan

National Vision

Pandora Yeargin-Johnson

NuSoul Marketing Group

Christy Ziglar

Shine Bright Kids