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Services

​​​​​​​​​The ​Vision loss rehabilitation therapy helps people with all types of vision loss to develop or restore key daily living skills, helping enhance their independence, safety and mobility. Ophthalmologists, optometrists and other health care professionals may refer you for this therapy as a next step after medical treatment.

Vision loss rehabilitation therapy is provided by certified specialists, who will work with you to create a personalized rehabilitation plan to meet your needs and goals. 

Your plan may include one or more of the following services:

Low vision service​s

If you have low vision, learning to use the sight you have left can be life-changing. Our certified specialists can:

  • Provide a functional vision assessment designed for people with low vision
  • Explain eye diseases and how they affect vision in an easy-to-understand way
  • Teach techniques for maximizing eyesight, like how to use lighting and contrast  
  • Give one-on-one instruction on helpful sight-enhancing devices, like specialty magnifiers​
  • Connect you with the Specialized Technical Equipment Program (STEP), which provides consumer products and assistive technology to Albertans who are blind, partially sighted and deafblind. Your specialist will explain your eligibility and demonstrate appropriate products during your appointment.​

Essential skills for dail​y living

Our certified specialists can help you build the skills you need to live safely and independently with vision loss. This may include helping you: 

  • Learn safe methods of pouring a cup of coffee, preparing a meal and using household appliances
  • Discover simple techniques for labelling medications, identifying money, using the phone and organizing household items
  • Learn how to use large-print, braille and audio products, and adaptive technology as a part of day-to-day life
  • Find community programs, financial subsidies and other helpful resources available in your local area  ​

Travel and mobility instruction

Learning to travel independently with vision loss is an essential skill. Our certified specialists can help you learn how to:

  • Use the guiding techniques: comfortable way to walk with a sighted person, the ability to use remaining vision and other senses to travel
  • Use a white cane and other mobility tools
  • Find and cross intersections
  • Ride public transit with confidence to reach community resources like the grocery store, bank or shopping mall
  • Navigate new environments like a workplace or school campus

Specialized Technical Equipment Program (STEP)

STEP provides assistive technology for home use to Albertans with significant vision loss. The program is made possible through an accountable grant from Alberta Ministry of Seniors and Community Supports.

How Does STEP Work?

The program requires you to contribute 25 per cent of the cost of any equipment you receive, up to a maximum of $500, unless you are low income or receiving assistance.

To be eligible for STEP, you must be registered with CNIB, a resident of Alberta, be covered by the Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan, and unable to obtain funding from another source. Degree of vision loss is also a factor; we must have a copy of your current eye report.

Please note:

If you are deafblind, there is specialized equipment available to you. Applicants seeking to replace or duplicate working equipment they already own are not eligible. Application deadlines are May 31, September 30, and January 15.​