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halfHelen, an organisation working on ensuring that children everywhere have access to high-quality preventive eye and hearing screenings.

Shared by Carolina Piedade on 2022-09-09 00:05

About the solution

When Chelsea Elliott failed her eye screening, it revealed that she was blind in her left eye. This meant that for the next few days, she was making trips to eye doctors to determine the cause of her vision loss. After many trips back and forth, finally, a retina specialist named Jose “Pepe” Martinez made the diagnosis: Coats’ disease. This disease is rare, and causes monocular ailment, which facilitates the creation of blood vessels in the back of the eye, leading to constriction and rupture. As the disease progresses, leakage causes the retina to swell and eventually detach, resulting in permanent blindness.

Two years later, Chelsea failed again a required hearing test at her elementary school and discovered she was also deaf in her right ear, resulting from the absence of three small bones in her middle ear that was likely dissolved by infections she had as an infant and not the direct result of Chelsea would suffer another setback as a teenager when a cataract formed on her lens, and her blind eye became noticeably smaller than her other eye. After consulting with doctors, the decision to remove the eye was made. Six weeks after recovering from her surgery,

The creation of half Helen, began shortly after graduating from St. Edward’s University in 2013 when Chelsea learned about the Spot camera. This revolutionary new tool takes 23 measurements of the eye within seconds. Unlike the standard eye chart, which can only measure an individual’s distance acuity, the Spot camera is able to identify six of the most common vision impairments in infants as young as six months old. At the same time, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommended that children as young as three have vision screenings. Chelsea realized that if the camera and these new recommendations had been in place when she was a child, her doctors could have spotted her disease sooner and possibly saved her eye.

Using her graduation money, she set out to start a half Helen Foundation, a nonprofit organization that provides preventive vision and hearing screenings. With the help of the West Austin Lions Club and other donors, Chelsea purchased half Helen’s first Spot camera and two audiometers for screenings. As of 2021, half Helen had screened over 60,000 children in Hawaii and Texas! If children need additional services after being screened, hH works to ensure they receive a full eye exam and corrective wear.

This story was adapted from https://halfhelen.org/about/
Find them at https://halfhelen.org/

The images were taken from https://halfhelen.org/ as we do not own any of them.

This solution shall not include mention to the use of drugs, chemicals or biologicals (including food); invasive devices; offensive, commercial or inherently dangerous content. This solution was not medically validated. Proceed with caution! If you have any doubts, please consult with a health professional.

About the author

Tirelessly pursuing her goal, Chelsea is determined to ensure that children everywhere have access to high-quality preventive screenings and a comprehensive eye examination annually.

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