Veterans' Eye Care Services - Almost 2 Million in 2018

March 1, 2019

All Veterans enrolled in VA health care are eligible for diagnostic, preventive and therapeutic eye care services and other health care services that include:

  • Vision Rehabilitation for visually impaired Veterans

Veterans in all enrollment Priority Groups may be eligible to receive eyeglasses and/or medically necessary contact lenses.The need for an updated eyeglass prescription at VA expense will be determined by the VA eye care provider (optometrist or ophthalmologist) for eligible Veterans.Click here for a detailed look at VA's eye care services. 

  • VA eye care is the third busiest service in VHA, behind primary care and mental health.
  • Ophthalmology is the second busiest surgical service, behind general surgery, with over 76,000 cases in FY18.
  • The most common surgical procedure performed in VHA is cataract surgery.
  • Over 30,000 laser surgery procedures were performed in our clinics in FY18.
  • VA's Ophthalmology workforce consists of over 1200 physicians located at 115 clinics.

Eye care services for over 1.81 million VeteransIn fiscal year 2018, VHA's Office of Specialty Care Services provided Eye Care (Optometry and Ophthalmology) Services for a record number of over 1.81 million Veterans at about 381 VA medical facility sites located in urban, suburban, rural, and highly rural areas.VA eye care providers (optometrists and ophthalmologists) prescribed nearly 1.7 million pairs of eyeglasses that were provided to Veterans by VA Prosthetic and Sensory Aids Services.Every VA Eye (Optometry and/or Ophthalmology) Clinic provides basic low vision rehabilitation care. More intensive vision rehabilitation services are available within the VA Blind Rehabilitation Servicesprogram.VA eye care providers perform essential eye and vision examinations within the VA Polytrauma / Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) System of Care as well as provide brain injury vision rehabilitation services at select VA medical facilities.