Definition of Visual Impairments
The terms partially sighted, low vision, legally blind, and totally blind are used in the educational context to describe students with visual impairments. They are defined as follows:
- “Partially sighted” indicates some type of visual problem low vision, cataract surgery, corneal disorders, contact lenses resulted in a need for special education
- “Low vision” generally refers to a severe visual impairment, not necessarily limited to distance vision. Low vision applies to all individuals with sight who are unable to read the newspaper at a normal viewing distance, even with the aid of eyeglasses or contact lenses. They use a combination of vision and other senses to learn, although they may require adaptations in lighting or the size of print, and, sometimes, braille.
- “Legally blind” indicates that a person has less than 20/200 vision in the better eye or a very limited field of vision (20 degrees at its widest point)
- Totally blind students learn via braille or other non–visual media.
Report Card: India, Revised 2 September 1997.
|Portion of population below poverty line||328 million|
|Annual population growth rate||19.5%|
|Average per capita income||USD 92|
|Number of blind||6 million|
|Number of “Economically” blind (20/200 or worse)||12.5 million|
|Estimated number of ophthalmologists||8,500|
|Average cost of cataract surgery||USD 48|