AUCKLAND, New Zealand and CHANGSHA, China, July 26, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — China’s Aier Eye Hospital Group ("AIER") and New Zealand’s Objective Acuity ("OAL") have signed a Strategic Cooperation Agreement. The parties will use their respective core competencies to develop and commercialise Objective Acuity Vision Tests in China.
The Agreement sets out that, AIER will assist OAL with the development and clinical testing of OAL’s objective vision test for children. This will ultimately provide access for OAL’s breakthrough technology in over 200 hospitals in Aier’s network for children.
Existing visual acuity tests require a verbal response to the examiner, which can make it difficult to achieve an objective and accurate vision assessment. By comparison, OAL’s technology requires no verbal interaction, which can significantly increase accuracy and accessibility to children.
Adam Podmore, OAL’s CEO commented: "Partnering and working with leading eyecare provider Aier is an exciting step forward for the company. Time to market will be accelerated and as a consequence, so will relief for those children where ineffective vision problem detection tests have led to learning difficulties. This partnership with Aier is based on our shared mission to provide best in class detection of vision problems for all."
Dr. Li from the Aier Eye Hospital Group said: "Aier is excited to be partnering with Objective Acuity with their advanced vision testing technology to help identify vision problems in young children."
Objective Acuity is being advised by Innovator Capital the London based, specialist investment bank and China based EuSino Business Consulting.
Notes for editors
About Aier Eye Hospital
AIER is China’s leading hospital network in eye care and is also China’s first IPO listed medical institution (stock code: 300015, one of the CSI 300 index selected in 2015). AIER has established more than 200 specialist eye hospitals, covering 30 provinces and provides services to 70% of insured population all over the country with over 4 million outpatient visits annually. Recently, AIER has successfully established a presence in Hong Kong and the US.
AIER is committed to the introduction and adoption of world-leading ophthalmic technology and management concept. Professionalism, scale and science are at the core of its strategy to advance the development of China’s ophthalmic medical care.
About Objective Acuity (OAL)
OAL is a spin out from The University of Auckland from over 5 years of research. The Company is on track to significantly reduce the number of children with undetected vision problems. OAL’s quick, non-invasive vision test can objectively and accurately identify vision problems in children under five years old. Ultimately, OAL’s goal is to be the gold standard in vision testing & screening.
Vision disorders are the most prevalent, disabling condition among children. Of these, amblyopia, ‘lazy eye’, is the most common visual disability, and the main cause of preventable vision loss in children. Early diagnosis is key to preventing future social and learning difficulties that may develop as a result of undetected visual disorders. OAL plans to facilitate vision screening for over 20 million children globally.
The current industry gold standard is traditional letter and picture eye charts. However, studies suggest that a child cannot fully understand, and therefore cannot effectively undertake, a visual acuity test until they are five or six years old. Other current vision screening methods, such as portable autorefractors and photo screeners, while objective, only measure risk factors of vision loss and not visual acuity directly.
It is critical to identify vision problems as early as possible, as they can restrict academic achievement, harm the development of hand-eye coordination, and lead to a lifelong deterioration in vision. If a child is left to wait until an age when standard testing can be performed successfully, amblyopia and other vision impairments may have already developed and become significantly harder to treat, resulting in higher health care costs and poorer health and quality of life outcomes for these individuals.
OAL’s patented test involves a moving pattern (the "drifting stimulus") displayed on a screen, or tablet. The child covers one eye at a time. A camera measures the movement of each eye, and our proprietary algorithms then detect optokinetic nystagmus (OKN) – an involuntary sawtooth motion of the eye that typically occurs as a reflex response to OAL stimuli. The test is 100% objective and the system simply indicates the presence or absence of an OKN response. Intuitively, this presence of OKN indicates intact visual acuity, while the absence of OKN indicates the opposite. With this objective measurement OAL can confidently and accurately assess children for visual acuity, and significantly reduce false positive / false negative results associated with current methods that rely on a child’s response.
For further information please contact:
Objective Acuity Limited
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