Italy's Commissione Difesa Vista (CDV), which comprises diverse associations of the Italian vision community, has commissioned an Italian version of the successful ?Check Yearly. See Clearly? program led by Vision Council of America, calling it ?Controllo annuale vista ottimale.? The aim is to increase the number of Italians who receive annual eye tests by spreading the message that they are indispensable in order to protect sight.

The Italian program, was was presented by Callisto Fedon, CDV's chairman involves materials promoting the initiative that have already been distributed to over 9,000 vision centers in Italy. They include decals, posters and brochures containing information about eye diseases and the importance of eye exams.A series of 15 and 30-second television commercials about healthy vision, carrying the ?Controllo annuale vista ottimale? slogan, were broadcast in Italy starting last Oct. 10. The adverts have a Halloween theme and follow a flying witch with poor vision on her broomstick. After crashing into a pole, she realizes that a regular eye test could prevent her vision troubles. A voiceover advises that ?Seeing well has nothing to do with magic.?

The VCA hopes that other countries in Europe and elsewhere will follow Italy's example by introducing similar proactive measures to promote annual sight tests. In its latest action in the USA, the VCA has launched an outreach project intended to equip every elementary school in New York City with a ?Healthy Vision Kit? educating teachers and parents about the warning signs of undetected vision problems in children.