Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What are some of the ways people lose their vision?
Some of the most common ways are macular degeneration, glaucoma, and cataracts; but the number one cause of vision loss in the country among working-age adults is diabetes. Other causes include accidents, strokes, high blood pressure, violence, HIV/AIDS and other autoimmune deficiencies. In addition, there are also other causes of vision loss specific to newborns and young children.
I don’t live in the Atlanta area. Can I still receive services?
Our primary service area is in the Atlanta metro area, but we also provide a once a month satellite low vision clinic service in Cumberland, Fayetteville, Suwanee and Griffin. Some of our clients travel to CVI from other areas of Georgia due to services not being available in their area.
Why did my optometrist/ophthalmologist refer me to your agency?
We get many referrals from local eye doctors whose patients have lost a significant amount of vision. Doctors submit these referrals with hopes that CVI can assist their patient by providing low vision aids or by teaching them independent living skills. While optometrists and ophthalmologists determine eye health from a medical perspective, CVI’s programs help with education, training and learning how to use remaining vision.
I am not totally blind, can you still help me?
Yes, we assist with a variety of levels of vision loss. Our clients range from low vision to total blindness.
I don’t have much income, but I still need your services. Can you still help me?
We do not turn people away due to their inability to pay. For more information, contact CVI at 404-875-9011.
What is a low vision evaluation and how do I make an appointment?
A low vision evaluation includes meeting with a specialist who will assess your needs for low vision aids and devices. It is not a traditional exam so your eyes will be not be dilated and medication will not be prescribed. During your appointment you will be introduced to various devices such as high powered magnifiers, talking products and writing and large print aids.
In order to make an appointment, you must submit the results of your most recent eye exam (within the last 12 months) and an application to the CVI. Once that paperwork has been received, you will be contacted to schedule an appointment. The Low Vision Clinic holds low vision evaluations on Tuesdays and Thursday by appointment.
Young children up to the age of five may also receive a functional vision assessment through CVI’s BEGIN early intervention program.
Do you perform eye exams?
No, we do not perform eye exams. You can call CVI for more information at 404-875-9011. They will give you resources to assist.
What type of classes/training will you provide to help me be more independent?
CVI provides a variety of training classes such as braille, white cane travel, diabetes education, job readiness, computer assistive technology, cooking and meal preparation, completing household chores, health and fitness, financial management, self-defense, and emergency preparedness.
Do you provide services for children?
Yes, we provide services for infants, toddlers and school-age children through our BEGIN and STARS programs. Both programs provide information, education resources, guidance, parental support, summer camps and social outings.
I just lost my vision and need someone to talk to about it, do you provide counseling or a support group?
Yes, we provide support groups and counseling resources. You can visit our support group page for more details on the various groups, meeting dates and times. For counseling resources, contact the CVI at 404-875-9011.
How do I manage my diabetes now that I am blind?
Accessible diabetes supplies and devices are available to purchase in the VisAbility Hub located on the first floor at CVI.
Where can I purchase magnifiers and other devices to help me see better?
Low vision aids and devices can be purchased at our VisAbility Hub located on the first floor of CVI at 739 W. Peachtree St. NW. You can visit the store in person or shop online at the VisAbility Hub. The VisAbility Hub is a one-of-a-kind nonprofit retail store in which purchases benefit the CVI Solution Fund which provides low vision aids and devices to clients who may not afford them.
My relative needs help at home. Can you come out and assist?
Yes, we have a Community Based Services program that provides some rehabilitation training directly in the home or in the community depending on the need and the location of the individual. Most of the individuals receiving these services live in metro Atlanta and are retirement age or older with the goal of not relocating from home. The services provided in this program include: case management, instruction on traveling safely both at home and in the community, and instruction on some skills needed for living more independently at home. To apply for this program contact CVI intake staff for assistance with an application.
Do you help people who are blind or visually impaired find employment?
Yes, as part of our rehabilitation training program we provide job readiness programs where client’s will get assistance with writing resumes, improving interview skills, disclosure of their disability and workplace accommodations.
When are you open?
We are open Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Our VisAbility Hub is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Occasionally, the VisAbility Hub is also open on Saturdays. Check the website for specific dates.
Do you provide transportation to your center?
No, unfortunately we do not provide transportation. However, our location is on the MARTA bus line and we are within one block walking distance from the North Avenue MARTA station.