Public Urged to 'See the Whole Picture' During AMD Awareness Week

Listen to Mr Mark Cahill, Consultant Eye Surgeon explain AMD with his patient Margery Duffy on Newstalk 106

  • Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of sight loss in Ireland, affecting over 100,000 people
  • Campaign aims to remind public of the importance of regular eye tests as early diagnosis can result in the effective treatment of AMD and prevention of sight loss
  • AMD Awareness Week will run from Monday 25th – Saturday 30th September
  • Renowned photographer Barry McCall worked with four individuals to show the public what it would be like to look through the eyes of someone with advanced, untreated AMD

Monday, 25th September 2017, Dublin: Photography exhibition See the Whole Picture’ by Barry McCall was today officially launched at the National Gallery of Ireland as part of AMD Awareness Week which runs from September 25th – 30th. AMD, which affects over 100,000 Irish people, is the leading cause of blindness in Ireland. The symptoms often go unrecognised in the early stages so it is crucial that the public, especially those aged 50 and older, get their eyes tested regularly. Now in its 10th year, AMD Awareness Week aims to raise awareness of the condition and encourage the public to get a free AMD test. The campaign is supported by the Irish College of Ophthalmologists (ICO) alongside eye health stakeholders and patient support organisations Fighting Blindness and The National Council for the Blind of Ireland (NCBI).

World renowned photographer Barry McCall worked with four individuals to create a narrative about life with AMD with real people at its centre, telling their own story. He captured each individual’s passion as seen through their eyes to show how AMD has impacted their life. The images vary from early stages of the condition, blurred or wavy vision, to advanced stages, which manifests as a large black mark in the central vision. The striking portraits hope serve as a reminder to everyone to take a couple of minutes to get their eyes tested regularly to ensure they ‘See the Whole Picture’ for years to come.

Mr Mark Cahill, Consultant Eye Surgeon, and spokesperson for the Irish College of Ophthalmologists explained; “AMD is a very manageable eye condition when diagnosed and treated early, as effective therapies are now available.  AMD remains, however, a leading cause of sight loss in Ireland in older adults and we continue to work to increase public awareness on the importance of early diagnosis and taking care of your eye health.  The prevalence of AMD is rising significantly as our population ages and we emphasise the importance of having resources available in the health service to deliver the sight saving treatments. 

If you are over 50, it is important to get your eyes checked regularly, particularly if there is a family history of eye disease or if you notice any change in your sight. It is also important to remember that a healthy lifestyle can have a big positive impact on eye health and help to slow the progression or onset of AMD; don't smoke, eat a healthy diet rich in leafy greens and exercise regularly." 

A dedicated mobile testing unit will travel to Cork, Dublin, Galway, Limerick and Waterford during AMD Awareness Week offering free AMD eye tests and information to the public.  

Free eye testing is available nationwide during AMD Awareness Week . Visit for further information and full list of nationwide testing locations.

The Novartis AMD Testing Unit Will be Visiting the Following Locations During AMD Awareness Week:

Dublin on Tuesday, 26th September:

  • County Library Tallaght, Library Square, Tallaght, from 10am – 1pm
  • Lexicon Library, Dún Laoghaire, Co. Dublin from 2pm – 6pm

Waterford on Friday, 27th September:

  • Waterford Health Park, Slievekeale Road, Waterford, from 10am- 1pm
  • Ardkeen Shopping Centre, Waterford from 2pm – 6pm

Limerick on Thursday, 28th September:

  • Castletroy Golf Club, Golf Links Road, Castletroy, Limerick from 10am – 1pm
  • Junction of O'Connell Street and Thomas Street, Limerick from 2pm – 6pm

Galway on Wednesday, 29th September:

  • Ballybane Library, Castlepark Road, Ballybane, Galway from 10am – 1pm
  • Westside Shopping Centre, Galway from 2pm – 6pm

Cork on Saturday, 30th September:

  • Mahon Point Shopping Centre, Link Road, Co. Cork from 10am – 1pm
  • Cork City Library, 57-61 Grand Parade, Cork from 2pm to 6pm


25th September 2017