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Hong Kong Innovation Foundation Partners with PolyU to Help 200 Children Improve Eyesight
31-08-2019

Home-grown innovation receives international and local recognitions for its proven benefits in containing myopia progression

The Hong Kong Innovation Foundation, the holistic innovation ecosystem by Sino Group, partners with the School of Optometry of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) on the PolyU-HKIF Children Eye Care Project. Spanning two years, the project will provide vision screening and proprietary myopia control spectacles for 200 children aged 6-12 from underprivileged families. 
 
The meaningful project was kicked off at a ceremony officiated by Dr Miranda Lou, Executive Vice President, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University; Prof. David Shum, Yeung Tsang Wing Yee and Tsang Wing Hing Professor in Neuropsychology, Chair Professor of Neuropsychology, and Dean of Faculty of Health and Social Sciences, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University; Professor Carly Lam, Interim Head, School of Optometry, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University; Mr Daryl Ng, JP, Deputy Chairman of Sino Group and Chairman of the Hong Kong Innovation Foundation and Mr Andrew Young, Associate Director (Innovation) of Sino Group.
 
With a vision of helping children from underprivileged families to control myopia progression at the optimal age and reduce vision problems attributed to myopia in the long run, the project will benefit children with 300 degrees or above of short-sightedness. Through the project, children will be provided with the award-winning Defocus Incorporated Multiple Segments (DIMS) Spectacle Lens, which has been tested with proven effectiveness in controlling children’s myopia progression. PolyU will also provide regular follow-up check-ups to the participating children during the two-year project.
 
Mr Daryl Ng, Chairman of the Hong Kong Innovation Foundation, remarked, ‘We share similar values with PolyU, which has a strong and excellent tradition in scientific research.  The Group believes that innovation and technology defines our future, it is crucial to the diversified, sustainable development of Hong Kong as well as enhance its competitiveness.  It is with this idea that we established the Hong Kong Innovation Foundation to build a holistic innovation ecosystem.’
 
Speaking at the kick-off ceremony, Mr Andrew Young, Associate Director (Innovation) of Sino Group, said, ‘The project demonstrates the boundless possibilities of innovation and its importance to our lives and society.  In addition to supporting home-grown innovation, we also hope that this project expands the children’s horizons, opens them up to innovation and technology.’

‘This is a meaningful project that offers children from underprivileged families a comprehensive eye care service to control their myopia progression. We are delighted to learn that PolyU contributes our innovation and expertise to make a difference in our society. While serving the community with their professional skills, our students also gain experience in practising what they learned in the classroom through this service-learning model,’ said Dr Miranda Lou, Executive Vice President, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, in her remarks.
 
DIMS Spectacle Lens, jointly developed by PolyU and Hoya Corporation, have won the Grand Prize, Grand Award and Gold Medal at the 46th International Exhibition of Inventions of Geneva, Switzerland, in April 2018. It is a comfortable and safe product for myopia control. Results of the clinical trials show that children wearing DIMS Spectacle Lens had myopia progression reduced by 59%. More than 20% of the children who were in treatment group of the research did not show any myopia progression at all.
 
In addition to protecting the eyesight of children by slowing down myopia progression, the project also aims to expand their horizons in innovation and technology.  Participating children will be offered opportunities to join activities related to innovation and technology, such as sessions at OC STEM Lab at Olympian City and Sino Inno Lab in Kwun Tong.
 
Huang Mei-Qi, 12 years old, is a beneficiary of the project. She was first diagnosed with myopia of 150 degrees last year, and this year it has increased drastically to 300 degrees.  In 2017, her family moved to a tiny sub-divided flat, where light is often blocked by clothes hung to dry indoors.  Since then she has been doing homework and using computer with insufficient light.
 
Huang Ho-Yan, 10 years old, is another beneficiary of the project, who shares a similar experience with Mei-Qi.  She too was diagnosed with myopia of 150 degrees last year, and it has increased to 300 degrees.  Her mother had thought that wearing glasses would lead to a rapid increase of myopia, so at first Ho-Yan were told to wear glasses only when necessary, such as in class when she needed to look at the blackboard. However, as Ho-Yan’s myopia continued to worsen, her mother then tried to look for myopia control solutions but found such products unaffordable.  Ho-Yan will soon be provided with myopia control spectacles under the project.  In addition, her parents will also remind their book-loving daughter to take a break while reading and limit her time of watching tv and using electronic devices, in the hope that Ho Yan’s myopia progression will be slowed down.
 
‘Eyesight is essential to learning and personal growth.  This project is conducive to children’s development in the long run, it also resonates with the Hong Kong Innovation Foundation’s vision of building a holistic innovation ecosystem to support Hong Kong’s growth in the long run,’ added Mr Ng.
 
The Hong Kong Innovation Foundation strives to promote a holistic innovation eco-system that is conducive to Hong Kong’s growth into an international innovation and technology hub by serving diverse sectors from young pupils to graduates and entrepreneurs.  The Eye Care Project for children, launched in collaboration with PolyU, a local role model of innovation, is another initiative to show our support for the development of innovation and technology in Hong Kong.
 
About the Hong Kong Innovation Foundation

Hong Kong Innovation Foundation (HKIF), the holistic innovation eco-system of Sino Group, actively supports innovation initiatives conducive to innovation and technology and drives meaningful discussions as Hong Kong develops into a smart city.

www.hkif.org.hk