IN-SIGHT, in collaboration with Dr. Greg Waldorf and MCPHS University, hosts a weekly pediatric low vision clinic for children age six months to seventeen years old.
Unlike our adult low vision patients who can read an eye chart and descriptively tell us what they can and cannot see, our youngest patients typically require a much more observational exam.
It is not uncommon for Dr. Waldorf and his optometry students to get down on the floor with toys to see how the kids react to different shapes, colors, and distances.
The observations that are made during the exam end up informing recommendations that are made to the child’s parents, teachers, early intervention specialists, and others about the best ways to support the child’s independence and learning.
Up until recently these sessions were done in the same room as our adult exams. With all of the specialized equipment in the room it was not always possible for the youngest kids to be able to crawl around on the floor or otherwise explore the room.
In early August, however, we converted a room that had previously housed our collection of assistive technology into a new pediatric exam room. The space is more wide open, has space to house toys and games, and also includes a kid-sized table and chairs. The room also got a new coat of paint and carpeting.
The space is flexible enough that the furniture can be moved around easily to accomodate the unique needs of individual children and their families.
The renovation of the room was funded by grants from the Warwick Rotary, The Helene and Bertram Bernhardt Foundation, as well as dozens of donations that were raised through the online 401 Gives campaign that IN-SIGHT participated in last spring.