International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness

The International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) was established in 1975 by the International Council of Ophthalmology and the World Blind Union. It brings together member nations, academic centers, non-governmental organizations and committed individuals in the field of blindness prevention. Working closely with the Program for Prevention of Blindness of the World Health Organization (WHO), IAPB coordinates sight preservation activities around the world.

Three years ago, IAPB and WHO launched the Vision 2020 program. The goal of Vision 2020 is to control the main causes of avoidable blindness by the year 2020. The target diseases are cataract, trachoma (an eye infection), onchocerciasis (a parasitic disease), childhood blindness, refractive error and low vision, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy. In each country, workshops are being held to develop the strategies that will be used to achieve disease reduction. IAPB is sponsoring such a workshop for the United States on World Sight Day. Through cooperative action in all countries, avoidable blindness can be eliminated.