Monday, June 27, 2016

Clearly Vision Prize: Improving The World’s Vision?

Can the Clearly Vision Prize manage to provide solution to the world’s “hidden disability” - i.e. poor eyesight?

By: Ringo Bones 

Unknown to most of us, 2.6-billion people around the world have poor eyesight and lack the means to treat and / or improve their current disorder. According to a recent global economic competitiveness study, poor vision costs the global economy up to 3-trillion US dollars a year. Fortunately, there are already ways recently started to alleviate this “largely unseen” global problem. 

The Clearly Vision Prize is an ideas competition for supply chain experts, data wizards and techies who have knowledge and technologies that can be applied to vision in innovative new ways. The very best ideas – those that have the potential to transform the way we deliver vision to all – will compete for US$250,000 in prizes and one-on-one mentoring opportunities to make them a reality. Clearly Vision Prize is now open to entrepreneurs around the world. You don’t need to be working in the eye care industry to enter, but your idea should aim to drive progress in one or more of these solution categories: 

1.        Diagnosis – People need reliable diagnoses, no matter where they live, their access to healthcare, or their age or gender. 

2.       Training – We need technology to accelerate the process of training people to identify the conditions that lead to poor vision.

3.       Supply – People need access to basic solutions like glasses through sustainable supply chain and distribution models. 

4.       Insights – We need solutions that harness the power of “big data”, helping eye care provides gain insights to work more efficiently. 

One idea to improve access to clear vision to the world’s poorest citizens that got noticed by the mainstream press was from a Hong Kong businessman and Clearly Vision Prize founder James Chen. Given that billions still have no access to vision correcting spectacles, Chen’s suggested a method of distributing spectacles to those living in the world’s remotest places via delivery drones like the types already trialed by the online shopping site Amazon to deliver their orders. The closing date for entries to the Clearly Vision Prize is on July 18, 2016.   

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