Academic journal article Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness

Editor's Page

Academic journal article Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness

Editor's Page

Article excerpt

To conclude our centennial celebration in 2006, the Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness (JVIB) published a special supplement on the topic of visual impairment as a public health issue. Various authors framed the challenges and issues of visual impairment in the context of public health, striving to make the logical connection between policy and practice. After reading the special supplement, and out of curiosity, I reviewed the 12 issues published in 2006 to see how many contained at least one manuscript that showed an easy and clear connection of visual impairment as a public health issue. To my surprise, the answer was six. These included articles on health, HIV/AIDS, and neuroscience and brain plasticity. This discovery may be analogous to buying a new car and then seeing the same car everywhere you drive. It was always there; you just didn't notice it.

This month's lead article, by Capella-McDonnall, is a complement to the special supplement, since it addresses one of the many health challenges that are faced by persons with vision loss. Readers from developed countries usually live a life of abundance. As society is now learning, overabundance can be a challenge just as deprivation is a challenge. One result of overabundance is weight gain. Overweight and obesity are major public health concerns that are associated with a multitude of medical conditions and negative psychosocial outcomes, as well as increased mortality. The author, through a review of the literature, shows that a lack of physical activity, known to be a greater problem among persons with disabilities, is a problem that has received attention from researchers in the field of visual impairment for many years. …

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