The Australian College of Optometry strongly embraces its public service mission of clinical care by providing routine and specialised eye care services for tens of thousands of people each year, in addition to working in collaboration on public health initiatives to improve eye health service access and equity.
The Victorian Eyecare Service (VES) is a key public eyecare service in Victoria ensuring access to eyecare and visual aids to Victorian Experiencing disadvantage, and is funded by the Victorian State Government Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).
The ACO has been responsible for administering the Victorian Eyecare Service on behalf of the Victorian State Government for over 30 years. More than 2 million Victorians experiencing disadvantage have benefited from quality eye care consultations.
In 2018, the ACO in partnership with rural practitioners provided 76,000 consultations, dispensed close to 50,000 spectacles or other visual aides to almost 62,000 patients across the state.
Funded by the Australian Government. Department of Health, and is co-led by the Brien Holden Visions Institute with the Australian College of Optometry following a consortium approach with the Aboriginal Health Council of South Australia, the Centre for Eye Health and Optometry Australia. The program funds the installation of eye health testing equipment, and training and support for health services using the equipment in 155 sites across Australia
The ACO is a member of Vision 2020 Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Committee. Strong eyes, strong communities an initiative of this committee is a five year plan for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander eye health and vision.