In 2011, the Defense Vision Center of Excellence (VCE) is scheduled to move into the new Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda. Co-located with other optometry and ophthalmology offices, the VCE will be a part of an eye center at the new Walter Reed. VCE was established in 2008 to improve care for service members with visual disorders or visual disturbances, including traumatic brain injuries.
Currently, there are not many statistics surrounding blast injuries and vision loss. According to VCE Director Col. (Dr) Donald Galiano, “VCE plans to gather information from joint DOD/VA records and use the information to learn about the relationship between blasts, traumatic brain injury, and vision interruption or loss. The data can then be used to develop preventive techniques and treatment options for service members and veterans.”
Plans are to develop the Defense and Veterans Eye Injury Registry (DVEIR) to track the occurrence, treatment, and outcomes for all eye injuries or visual dysfunction experienced by service members who have served since 9/11.
“Our goal is to bring researchers together everywhere on specific issues and to communicate with one another to enhance our own work and the work of others,” said Dr. Claude L. Cowan Deputy Director of VCE and Senior VA staff member.