Vision invention wins £20,000 award

Thanks for their giving, indeed. A UK-based organization that was included in a November Inventors Digest feature on philanthropic agencies and companies has announced the winner of its Beacon Visionary+ Challenge: an innovative device that will improve the quality of life for thousands of people with double vision.

The Lens Slip Occluder, developed by Burton-on-Trent company DHC Informatics Ltd., received £20,000. The Beacon Centre and the University of Wolverhampton, based in the West Midlands, England, teamed to offer the award. Beacon will contribute £10,000 in social investment; the university will add £10,000 worth of consultancy support.

The occluder is an optical device worn over a pair of glasses to improve vision when reading books, magazines or newspapers, watching television or using a computer. It was developed primarily to treat and alleviate diplopia (double vision). However, it can also be effective in treating visual disturbances caused by conditions such as multiple sclerosis, stroke, head injury, cataracts and glaucoma.

The winner was chosen by a panel of leading tech entrepreneurs and sight-loss experts, chaired by Dr. Stephen Fear, the “Phone Box Millionaire” known for running his first business largely from a red telephone box on the Bristol council estate.

“Diplopia is one of the most common vision disorders in the UK today,” said DHC Informatics Director Rebecca Harrison. “There are over 100,000 MS sufferers and over 150,000 people suffer a stroke each year, more than half of whom will experience problems with diplopia or blurred vision.”

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