New England Eye Commonwealth and Roslindale will close for the holiday season at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, December 24th and will reopen on Monday, December 29th. We wish you a wonderful holiday with your friends and family.

NEE On-Sight

Our Mission

Eye care accessibility to all.

Correcting and maximizing vision creates opportunities for:

  • Learning and reading
  • Socialization
  • Work and play
  • Safety and independence
  • Better emotional and physical health

Services

  • Eye exams and Eyeglasses
  • Low Vision Rehabilitation including occupational therapy
  • Case Management

On-Sight Pediatric Program

Schedule

Click on any of the event locations below for more information

Contact Information

Contact Paulette Tattersall Pediatric Program Director, at 617-587-5700 or Email to tattersallp@neco.edu

FAQ

How do I book an appointment with the mobile clinic?

Personnel from the child's school, preschool, or child center, makes the booking with us @ 617-587-5700. For a child to participate, parents must complete and sign the Parent Consent form, with as much information as possible, and send the form back to the contact person at the child's school/center.

At what age can a child have an eye exam?

Children of any age can have an eye exam – especially if there is any hint there may be a problem with the child's eyes or vision. An eye exam at preschool age provides an important baseline from which to compare future vision changes. It may also pick up vision problems that may not be obvious to parents, teachers, or pediatricians and may still be most treatable while the child is young.

Any child who has failed a vision screening at school or at their pediatrician's office, or who has developmental or neurological delays, should receive an eye exam from an eye doctor as soon as possible.

Vision can change, sometimes rapidly, as a child grows. A delay, or lack of comprehensive vision care, and not wearing eyeglasses when prescribed, may critically affect a child's ability to learn, concentrate, develop socially, and their academic and/or athletic performance.

How do I know if a child needs an eye exam?

A child who repeatedly displays any of the following symptoms, should be examined by an eye doctor:

  • Difficulty seeing - up close, or objects in the distance, or both
  • Avoiding and disliking schoolwork
  • Performing below their potential
  • Difficulty coordinating hand/eye movements
  • Feeling tired
  • Repeated headaches
  • Short attention span or poor concentration
  • Trouble focusing and keeping ones place while reading
  • Needs to tilt or lay head on desk or floor for reading
  • Skips or re-reads lines while reading
  • Trouble with reading comprehension

A child will not outgrow a vision problem, and cannot overcome a vision problem simply by trying harder. If a child has failed a vision screening at school, or at their pediatrician's office, they should be taken to an eye doctor for a comprehensive eye exam.

What happens during the eye exam on the mobile clinic?

Children receive a Comprehensive eye exam from an experienced eye doctor who specializes in children's vision. This eye exam is not a quick vision screening (such as at the pediatrician's office, or by the school nurse) but takes about 45 minutes. Dilating eye drops are used by the eye doctor. The eye exam determines if the child's eyes are healthy, focusing correctly, working well as a pair and whether the child is seeing well at all distances.

Each child receives a prescription for eyeglasses if necessary, mailed to the home address. Parents/guardians also receive the results of the eye exam, mailed to the home address

Can a parent be present at the child's eye exam?

Yes. Please make arrangements with the child's school or center that the mobile clinic is visiting. Parents/guardians receive the results of the eye exam, mailed to the home address.

Is there a cost for the eye exam on the mobile clinic?

As with any eye clinic, we work through health insurance. Not all insurance policies cover children's vision, but many do. We ask for the health insurance information on the consent form and we will contact the parent if their child is NOT AT ALL covered by health insurance for the eye exam. Please make sure the form is filled out accurately. We encourage each family to check with their own health insurance company so their child's individual vision coverage is fully understood.

How does a child receive eyeglasses after the eye exam?

Often, we have programs which will allow the child an additional pair of eyeglasses at no cost. If so, eyeglasses can be chosen on the mobile clinic, and delivered back to the center where the child had the eye exam, soon afterwards.

If the child has vision insurance for eyeglasses, the new eyeglasses prescription can be taken to any optical center to order a new pair of eyeglasses. If there is no vision insurance for eyeglasses, parents should indicate this on our Parent Consent form and we will direct the family to programs that can offer assistance.

My child's eyeglasses are lost or broken. Does my child need to have another eye exam to receive another pair of eyeglasses?

Lost and broken eyeglasses can be replaced at no cost with many health insurances. Check with the insurance company about your individual policy. To receive another pair of eyeglasses without the prescription, parents can return to the place the child last received their eyeglasses. With a current prescription, you can order a pair of eyeglasses at most optical stores. If the child's prescription is over one year old, the child will need to have another eye exam.

Eyeglasses can also be ordered with us on the mobile clinic, after the eye exam.

Is there a difference between the eye screening the school nurse or pediatrician does, and an eye exam on the mobile clinic?

Yes. Vision screening done at school or in a pediatrician's office is a quick test to determine changes in vision. It is important to know that a vision screening may not always accurately determine your child's full eye health or vision. Failing a vision screening means a child needs to go to a trained professional - an eye doctor or ophthalmologist - for a comprehensive eye exam. At this exam, the eye doctor identifies the source of the problem and treats any eye disease or vision problems that may need eye-glasses or other types of vision correction. On the mobile clinic we give comprehensive eye exams.

Documents

Comments

Your feedback helps us improve our program. Please send your comments about our Pediatric On-Sight Program to: MobileClinic@NewEnglandEye.org.

Here's what others have to say about our Pediatric On-Sight Program:

"We have been working with the On-Sight program over the last couple of years in our community. We have developed a great working relationship with them. We have been extremely pleased with the information, outreach, follow-up and services provided by the On-sight staff and doctors. All staff have been nothing but professional in all areas. We have learned much about vision for preschoolers and young children in our work with the On-sight staff. This information has strengthened our collective community knowledge."

"Some of our girls had been borrowing their friends’ glasses to read items on the board. This has taken a toll on their self-esteem and when the On-Sight mobile eye care unit was able to serve some of our girls this past fall we noticed an immediate difference. I think for me the best part was seeing how excited the girls were when they got their glasses. The smile on their faces was priceless. Thank you for all that you do!!!!!"

"We had a preschooler who was behaving badly, with a tantrum, while waiting to have his eyes examined. When the doctor was adjusting the final prescription for his glasses on him he suddenly became calm and his body became relaxed. I then realized that he could see through the lenses that the doctor was trying on him."

"I remember a child who after wearing his glasses for the first time said: "I can see now". The child was very happy and seemed relieved."

"I am a nurse at a school for emotional/behavioral children. Many of the children at my school have little or no self-confidence. And back-in-the-day needing to wear glasses only added to that. I cannot find the words to express to you what receiving glasses is doing for a couple of the students here. They read more, participate more and seem to be holding their heads just a bit higher. We have also seen a decrease in negative behaviors with these students. I can't say with 100% confidence that this is a direct result of them receiving glasses, but it certainly is a factor. Thank you for what you do and the service you provide."

"I do not think this is an improvement that you can make. I think schools need to understand better how to diagnose children with vision difficulty. We as a school, benefited from the informational forms on your website and I wish we knew about you all sooner. But now that we do, we are hooked!! Thank you again!!"

"I believe our kids really benefitted from your program. Not all of their vision problems would have been picked up with our school screening. Also, the kids who had a normal complete dilated exam is reassuring, and we will know that if they have problems in school that vision difficulties are not causing their school problems."

"When the On-Sight doctors gave comprehensive eye exams at our school, 4 preschoolers were identified with eye issues requiring full-time glasses-wear. If not for this service, these eye issues may have gone untreated resulting in academic and social challenges down the road. We are fortunate that these four children were identified in preschool. We were able to work with the parents to establish their child as patients with optometrists locally for follow-up and continued care. We feel very fortunate for this service."

"We have students that are foreign born and this was their only opportunity to get an eye exam and get glasses. To see the smiles on their faces and the joy in their parents’ voices, we cannot thank New England Eye enough. The van driver and the doctors were nice and warm to the staff and students. The glasses were modern and nice."

"Many of the children were so happy to know they would be getting glasses - one even started dancing around outside the van singing what has now come to be known as the "I'm Getting Glasses" song. They were excited to pick out their own glasses and one young student exclaimed, "Wow everything looks so different!" after trying hers on."

"One of the preschool parents was very satisfied with the eye exam, and thankful to us, because she did not know her young child needed eye-glasses or had any problem with his vision."

"Staff was beyond excellent. They were courteous, clearly well-trained, accommodating, punctual, and just a pleasure to be around. They made our students feel comfortable as well provide an unbelievable service!"

"Staff were great, polite, flexible, nice to the kids, kids were not scared to have their eyes examined."

In The News

November, 2014

Helping students with needs that extend outside the classroom

bostonglobe.com

July, 2014

Congressman Joe Kennedy III visits New England Eye On-Sight

On Monday, July 7th, Congressman Kennedy visited New England Eye On-Sight while we were providing comprehensive eye exams at Citizens for Citizens HeadStart in Fall River. Congressman Kennedy met with the President, faculty, and optometry students from New England College of Optometry, staff of Citizens HeadStart, and toured our Mobile Vision Clinic.

Congressman Kennedy saw first-hand, young preschoolers receiving their first ever comprehensive eye exam. He also discussed

  • the incidence of vision problems in young children,
  • how uncorrected vision can affect a child’s ability to function, read, learn and engage in their world; and
  • the importance of access to eye care for the 250,000 children in MA with a vision problem.

May, 2014

Open Eyes, Open Doors

New England Eye On-Sight, as a coalition member of Children’s Vision Massachusetts, participated in the Open Eyes, Open Doors video submitted to the American Academy of Pediatrics Healthy Tomorrows 25th anniversary celebration.

The coalition seeks to provide greater recognition around children’s vision issues, provide local resources, and help facilitate effective methods and standards useful to pediatricians, health managers, preschool and school personnel, and parents, for early detection of vision issues in children.

April, 2014

New England Eye On-Sight Mobile Visits the Beebe School

March, 2014

Care at the Curbside: On Tour with Mobile Health Clinics

New England Eye On-Sight Mobile Vision Clinic participated in the Institute for Healthcare Improvement’s kick-off launch of “A 3-city East Coast Tour”, Boston-New York-DC, to raise public awareness and promote the value and diversity of Mobile Health Clinics. Other MA mobile clinic participants were The Family Van, Dana Farber, and the Northeastern/HIV Innovations clinics. The tour culminated in the Summit on Improving Patient Care, held March 9-12th at the Gaylord Center in Washington DC.

MOBILE HEALTH offers the unique flexibility of providing personalized expertise in health care to identified populations, at a time and location that is familiar and convenient. Mobile health clinics have been adopted as a best practice by the Department of Public Health, for the State of Massachusetts. Mobile Health is an important strategy for achieving health equity through community to clinical linkages.

New England Eye On-Sight provides the opportunity for young children and older adults who do not have access to eye-care, to receive a comprehensive eye exam and eye-glasses. After an On-Sight eye exam, patients are referred to the appropriate health care provider in the local community for further follow-up care.

October, 2013

New England Eye On-Sight participates in Children’s Vision Advocacy Day at the State House to support Bill S1672.

Photo - Senator James Timilty from Bristol & Norfolk discusses On-Sight Mobile Vision Clinic visit sites at school and preschools.

(Photo - Senator James Timilty from Bristol & Norfolk discusses On-Sight Mobile Vision Clinic visit sites at school and preschools.)

Over 80 pediatric ophthalmologists, optometrists, opticians, physicians, nurses, educators, public health professionals, students, and parents made 45 visits to legislators to raise awareness about the lasting impact of unidentified and uncorrected vision in children.

More than 250,000 Massachusetts children have a vision problem, many of whom do not receive vision screening and recommended follow-up care, and therefore are at risk of lifelong visual impairment and unnecessary obstacles to learning.

Approval of Bill S1672:

An Act Relative to the Save Our Children’s Sight Fund, would establish a trust fund consisting of monies voluntarily paid to the Commonwealth through consumer donations on Registry of Motor Vehicle applications. The monies would be expended for the purpose of facilitating coordinated eye-health services for children.

https://malegislature.gov/Bills/188/Senate/S1672

September, 2013

The New England College of Optometry partnered with Transitions Lenses and VSP Vision Care to bring free eye exams to Lowell High School's Freshman Academy students via the mobile eye clinics, nicknamed "Eyenstein".

September, 2013

New England College of Optometry Partners To Present Vision Clinics And Free Eyeglasses For Kids In Need

Vision correction for Preschoolers:

Please watch the "Eyes that Thrive" Preschool Project at ABCD HeadStart, funded by the American Optometric Association's "Healthy Eyes Healthy People" initiative.

New England Eye On-Sight eye doctors provided the preschoolers with comprehensive eye exams as a partner for this project.

Photos

Sponsorship

We are a not-for-profit clinic and welcome donations to our program.

For more information contact MobileClinic@NewEnglandEye.org
or 617-587-5700.

Schedule

Click on any of the event locations below for more information

Contact Information

Contact Melissa Ayala at New England Eye Institute at 617-396-8597 or email ayalam@neco.edu

FAQ

How can I get the mobile eye clinic to come visit our group or facility?

Contact Melissa Ayala at New England Eye Institute at
617-396-8597 or email ayalam@neco.edu

What are the responsibilities of the site?

At each community site, a "point person" will be assigned to work with the On-Sight staff to help:

  • arrange a date & location
  • assist individuals in signing up for eye exams
  • encourage older adults who do not have health insurance, do not have an eye-doctor, do not regularly have a comprehensive eye exam, who remain alone, and/or have been identified as possibly having vision loss by friends, family or care-givers, to receive an eye exam.
  • provide the On-Sight staff a completed schedule at least 1 week before our scheduled visit
  • provide feedback to On-Sight staff about necessary follow-up care co-ordination

What services are provided on the mobile eye clinic?

We provide on-site eye exams and low vision evaluations by eye doctors who specialize in the care of older adults. We can assist people in obtaining the appropriate eyeglasses prescriptions or complete an assessment of low vision device and recommendation to meet each person's unique capabilities and goals. We also provide referral to rehabilitation services, follow up eye care services, and referral to social service agencies such as the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind.

What is an eye exam?

A comprehensive eye and vision exam can only be conducted by an optometrist or ophthalmologist, who has the specialized training needed to make a definitive diagnosis and prescribe treatment.

Using specialized equipment and procedures, comprehensive eye examinations are the only effective way to confirm or rule out the presence of any eye disease, abnormalities or vision problem.

A comprehensive adult eye examination can include:

  • Patient and family health history
  • Visual acuity measurement
  • Tests of visual function and eye health including depth perception, color vision, peripheral vision and response of the pupils to light
  • Assessment of refractive status to determine the presence of nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism
  • Evaluation of eye focusing, eye teaming and eye movement abilities
  • Eye health examination and other tests as needed

What is a visual screening?

Vision screening helps identify undetected vision problems or changes in vision. The person is then referred for further evaluation to an eye doctor or ophthalmologist. Vision screenings can take many forms – they are often done at schools, by a pediatrician or other primary care physician, when applying for a driver's license, and can be a part of local health fairs put on by hospitals, social service agencies or fraternal groups like the Lions and Elks Clubs.

There is often misunderstanding about what passing a vision screening means. The vision screening provides a quick measure of certain aspects of vision, but cannot evaluate everything about eye health, function, and vision - only a comprehensive eye exam can do that.

New England Eye On-Sight vision screening quickly identifies an older adult's risk and need for further vision care, based on a check of their visual function. In no way can a visual screening take the place of an eye exam.

Documents

Comments

Your feedback helps us improve our program. Please send comments to adult/low vision program to: MobileClinic@NewEnglandEye.org.

Here's what others have to say about our program:

In The News

New England Eye On-Sight will be at the Universal Design and Technology Conference on September 23rd at the Hynes Convention Center, Boston.

Sponsorship

We are a not-for-profit clinic and welcome donations to our program.

For more information contact MobileClinic@NewEnglandEye.org
or 617-587-5700.

On-Sight Locations

Children:
Preschools; Elementary, Middle and High schools; Literacy programs; After-school programs; Child-centered care facilities.

Adults:
Senior housing; Assisted Living Facilities; Councils on Aging; Associations for the Blind

For booking and general inquiries call 617-262-2020

Find out which insurance plans we accept »