The Immediate and Long-Term Impact of Free Glasses Clinics in the Los Angeles Area


  • Anna Heur La Canada High School
  • Cindi Yim University of Southern California



Free glasses, Free glasses clinic, Los Angeles, impact of glasses


While glasses are essential to proper vision for millions, more than 250,000 Los Angeles residents in need of glasses have failed to obtain them. To combat this issue, three free glasses clinics utilizing donated glasses were implemented at Los Angeles County + University of Southern California Medical Center (LAC+USC) from November 2021 to March 2022. The objective of this study was to determine the impact of free glasses on patients. Patients who received free glasses completed primary surveys, which determined the cause behind the inaccessibility to glasses and the difficulty of life without glasses. Secondary surveys were conducted 90 days (Group 1), 150 days (Group 2), or 210 days (Group 3) after the clinic to determine the longer-term impact of free glasses. Of the 320 respondents, cost prevented 68% of patients from obtaining glasses, and patients’ daily activities without glasses were significantly harder as a result (difficulty of 3.63 out of 5). Upon receiving glasses, patients reported an improvement of 4.51 out of 5 in vision. After the allotted period, 83% of Group 1, 69% of Group 2, and 65% of Group 3 reported continue glasses use. Across all three groups, patients reported an improvement of 4.72 out of 5 in improvement of daily activities. While donated glasses did not always match patients’ prescriptions exactly, they increased ease of basic tasks (reading, walking and driving) for patients. This model could be adopted in hospitals serving patient populations where cost is a barrier.




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Author Biography

Cindi Yim, University of Southern California


Dr. Cindi Yim is a cornea fellow in the department of ophthalmology at the University of Southern California.

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How to Cite

Heur, A., & Yim, C. (2022). The Immediate and Long-Term Impact of Free Glasses Clinics in the Los Angeles Area. Journal of Student Research, 11(2).



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