Global Blindness Set to 'Triple by 2050'
The number of blind people across the world is set to triple within the next four decades, researchers suggest, reported BBC.
Writing in Lancet Global Health, they predict cases will rise from 36 million to 115 million by 2050, if treatment is not improved by better funding.
A growing ageing population is behind the rising numbers.
Some of the highest rates of blindness and vision impairment are in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.
The percentage of the world's population with visual impairments is actually falling, according to the study.
But because the global population is growing and more people are living well into old age, researchers predict the number of people with sight problems will soar in the coming decades.
Analysis of data from 188 countries suggests there are more than 200 million people with moderate to severe vision impairment.
That figure is expected to rise to more than 550 million by 2050.
The worst affected areas for visual impairment are in South and East Asia. Parts of sub-Saharan Africa also have particularly high rates.
The study calls for better investment in treatments, such as cataract surgery, and ensuring people have access to appropriate vision-correcting glasses.