Global Blindness: Planning and Managing Eye Care Services

Understand global blindness and how to plan effective eye care with this online course for health professionals.




Global Blindness: Planning and Managing Eye Care Services is a free online course offered by the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

Overview - Global Blindness

    Find out how to plan and manage eye care, to avoid blindness

    Around the world, 285 million people are blind or visually impaired. 75% of this is avoidable and 90% is in low- and middle-income countries. In this online course we highlight the key facts about avoidable blindness and global initiatives to address it.


    Content on this course is also provided in Chinese, Spanish and Portuguese. A separate French course will run at the same time: La Cécité dans le Monde: Planifier et Gérer les Services de Soins Oculaires.

    The course on FutureLearn

    Learn together with eye health professionals from different cadres, countries and contexts on our FutureLearn courses. Learn also from the lead educator and course facilitators – eye care experts from around the world who share their expertise and experiences in the comments and discussions.

    You will be introduced to the magnitude and causes of blindness at a global level, relate to key global initiatives in avoidable blindness and be familiarised with practical approaches to strengthen eye health services, with an emphasis on low and middle income country settings.

    The course on OpenStudy

    This course is also currently available as an open access course on LSHTM's platform and can be accessed anytime. This means you can take the course at a time a pace that suits you.

    Email enquiries:

    What topics will you cover?

    • Epidemiological data on the causes and prevalence of blindness and visual impairment
    • VISION 2020: The Right to Sight
    • The Global Action Plan 2014-2019
    • Key public health strategies for cataract and refractive error
    • Health systems strengthening
    • The essentials of the planning process for eye care programmes
    • The principles of monitoring and evaluation

    What will you achieve?

    By the end of the course you will able to:

    • Describe the magnitude and causes of blindness and visual impairment, both globally and locally
    • Evaluate the key public health control strategies to strengthen service provision for cataract and refractive error in your local setting
    • Apply the essentials of the planning process for implementation in your setting
    • Assess the relevance of the Vision 2020: the right to sight initiative and the applicability of Global action plan 2014-2019 to your local setting
    • Interpret the relevance of monitoring and evaluation for effective management of an eye care service

    Who is the course for?

    This course is intended for all health care providers, health managers, NGO staff with an interest and some experience of, eye care health services. The course will especially benefit:

    • Eye health providers who lead or manage the service provision of an eye unit or eye care team
    • All clinical eye care providers who work in isolated and remote settings
    • Eye care providers with an interest in public health approaches
    • Any health providers and managers with an interest in resource limited eye care services
    • Non-governmental staff involved in developing eye care projects in low- and middle-income countries
    • Charity organisations and philanthropists involved in supporting eye care service provision
    • Ophthalmic residents and nurses in training programmes with an interest in low- and middle-income health services
    • Trainers in academic institutions with an interest in developing training in public health approaches for eye care service provision for their local setting

    On Demand

    This course is available on demand, and can be accessed anytime. This means you can take the course at your own pace and engage with other learners using the comments and discussion section.


    A printed and personalised Certificate of Participation can be obtained for a fee of £30. Certificates will be produced termly; at the end of January, April, August, November. Postage and delivery may take up to two weeks. Incomplete requests, or requests received after a deadline will be processed during the next certificate production run.

    CPD Certification Service

    This course has been certified by the CPD Certification Service as conforming to continuing professional development principles.

    Other relevant courses

    About the International Centre for Eye Health

    The International Centre for Eye Health is based at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine where it is led by Professors Allen Foster and Clare Gilbert. The main aim of the Centre is to facilitate a reduction in blindness with a particular emphasis on low-income countries.