Benefits and Accomodations for the Visually Impaired

Essay by brlracinchicHigh School, 12th gradeA+, March 2005

download word file, 11 pages 4.6

Millions of visually impaired people do not get help around the world. Countless visually impaired people do not realize the amount of opportunities available. People with visual impairments and blindness are guaranteed rights to education and can obtain specialized equipment to function similar to a sighted person in today's society. Accommodations are provided in the United States by law, and benefits are made through organizations for the blind. Blindness has become more prevalent than other disabilities in the United States, thus more accommodations are being made to help them achieve success.

Being certified legally blind offers visually impaired people helpful benefits in the United States. Legal blindness in the United States is defined by vision which cannot be corrected to better than 20/200 in the better eye, or if the visual field is twenty degrees or less in the better eye. Vision of 20/200 means what a person with 20/20 vision can see at two hundred feet, a legally blind person must be twenty feet or closer to see the same object (American 1).

Low vision may not be as progressed as legal blindness, but benefits are offered to both types of visual impairments.

Blindness is the inability to see, but is also applied to a variety of visual impairments. Loss of sight is usually caused by a disorder in the sight organs or brain (Matsuoka and Luxton 1). The disorder can be caused by a multitude of diseases such as glaucoma, retinitis pigmentosa, cataracts, and macular degeneration. Glaucoma "...involves fluid pressure in the eye becoming sufficiently high to irreversibly damage the optic nerve and retinal nerve fibers" causing the blindness (2). Retinitis pigmentosa is a progressive disease which results in night blindness and loss of peripheral vision, or side vision. Cataracts occur when the eye lens becomes clouded, which...