GBVI – Country Estimates of Distance-Vision Loss

Rupert Bourne - Vision Loss Expert Group

Serge Resnikoff

Peter Ackland - IAPB

Country estimates of distance-vision loss

GBM roundelThe VLEG estimates at individual country level may be found in these maps, which provide details of the prevalence, persons with visual impairment and gender differences by country.

The maps also show how these parameters are estimated to have changed over the period 1990 to 2015 in five-yearly intervals.

The 20 countries that are estimated to have the highest number of persons with a visual impairment in 2015 are shown in Table 4 below. As may be expected, this reflects to a large extent population size; other factors are the higher prevalence in poorer countries and larger numbers of more elderly persons in the High-Income countries. Collectively, the 20 countries account for more than three quarters (77%) of all visual impairment.

China and India together account for 45% of visual impairment, whilst their combined populations represent 37% of the global population.

The age-standardised prevalence rate (all ages) for visual impairment is a better measure to compare the relative burden of disease in different countries, as it adjusts for the different demographic profiles between countries. The 20 countries that have the highest prevalence are shown in Table 5 below. It is not surprising to see low-income countries predominate in the list.

 Total persons
CountryBlindMSVIBlind + MSVI
China6,024,64151,631,43057,656,071
India8,809,31047,743,72356,553,033
Pakistan1,846,8427,110,8258,957,667
Indonesia1,170,5057,707,9478,878,452
USA899,1896,733,9837,633,172
Bangladesh871,7824,843,7365,715,518
Turkey731,8684,811,3765,543,244
Russia548,6564,322,3064,870,962
Nigeria741,9453,495,3714,237,316
Japan447,4033,764,6514,212,054
Brazil690,8993,366,1114,057,010
Philippines535,0983,238,8363,773,934
Vietnam687,7202,553,3673,241,087
Thailand450,1822,750,2883,200,470
Egypt569,8632,558,5073,128,370
Iran393,0062,582,5142,975,520
Ethiopia857,6141,966,7422,824,356
Myanmar297,5802,505,1732,802,753
Mexico397,1172,150,1822,547,299
Germany220,6581,901,2522,121,910
CountryAge-Standardised Prevalence
% Visual Impairment (Blindness + MSVI)
Afghanistan9.09
Nepal8.17
Laos7.71
Eritrea7.66
Pakistan7.54
Niger7.52
Chad7.52
Turkey7.37
Yemen7.00
Timor Lest6.64
Myanmar6.56
Mali6.43
Somalia 6.24
Guinea6.08
Sierra Leone6.04
Mauritania6.03
Guinea Bissau6.01
Ethiopia5.77
Sudan5.76
Iraq5.66

shutterstock_171561608

shutterstock_281548502

RUM13_004

Chapter-1-GBVL-China&India-Graphic

As may be expected, the 20 countries that are estimated to have the highest number of persons with a visual impairment reflects to a large extent population size. Collectively, they account for more than three quarters (77%) of all visual impairment

Our Supporters