The Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology can provide eye care at no out-of-pocket cost to people who qualify through its public service program EyeCare America. The program provides two main services through an online referral center. Referrals are given to United States citizens and legal residents who do not have an ophthalmologist. To receive a referral, you can not belong to an HMO or have eye care coverage through Veterans Administration, according to the AAO website.
- If you are 65 or older and have not seen an EyeMD in three or more years, you could receive a medical eye exam and up to one year of care for any disease condition during the initial exam at no out-of-pocket cost
- Volunteer ophthalmologists waive co-payments, accepting Medicare and/or other insurance reimbursement as payment in full and patients without insurance receive this at no cost
- If you are not eligible for the above option but are determined to have an increased risk for glaucoma (can be assessed through age, race and family history) and have not had an eye exam in more than a year, you could receive a free glaucoma eye exam if uninsured
EyeCare America only provides medical eye care. The programs does not cover hospital and surgical facility costs, anesthesiologists, medications and eye prescriptions or cost of glasses.
To see if you qualify for EyeCare America, visit the Online Referral Center.
To become a volunteer ophthalmologist or partner with the program, visit the AAO website.