Chinese leads world in eye health awareness

Cai Wenjun
The majority of Chinese respondents to a survey on eye health view it as important for their overall health and say that good vision improves their quality of life
Cai Wenjun

Chinese people have the highest awareness of eye health, according to a survey covering over 6,000 adults from the United States, Japan, China, Germany, Russia and the UK.

According to the survey by Johnson & Johnson Vision, more than three-quarters of Chinese adults surveyed said they viewed eye health as important for their overall health while over half of them recognized that good vision improved their overall quality of life.

China leads the world in attention to eye health care with 63 percent of respondents in China getting an eye examination at least once a year. In the US the figure is 53 percent, Russia (49), Japan (43), Germany (37) and the UK (34), according to the survey released in Shanghai on Monday.

The impact of COVID-19, such as increased screen time due to working from home and remote learning, has also sharpened Chinese attention on eye health. Seven of 10 interviewees in China said they had taken more measures to protect their eyes during the pandemic.

Some 80 percent of Chinese adults are aware of myopia, or short sight. Nearly half of the interviewees said they are improving their eyesight by wearing a combination of glasses and contact lenses. At the same time, 76 percent of the respondents — youths in particular — indicated a demand for more knowledge about how to prevent it. 

Additional survey insights also shone light on a lack of understanding around cataracts, one of the leading causes of blindness.

According to the survey, 65 percent of respondents in China said they were aware of cataracts, lower than the global average. Compared to other age groups, respondents aged 24 to 55 displayed most familiarity with cataracts, noting that cataracts are caused by aging, other chronic diseases or genetic factors.

This demonstrated a need for education around cataract awareness in China, with the disease affecting 80 percent of those aged between 60 to 89, and 90 percent of those over 90.

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