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Meet Little Peeps

Mountain Health Gives is pleased to announce its first health outreach initiative, Little Peeps.

Laying the foundation for success in life starts with basics, including eye exams. Identifying and treating eye problems will lead to higher rates of academic success, increased confidence, and help children keep up with their peers. This is why Mountain Health Gives has selected pediatric vision care to be its first initiative.

Little Peeps is here to help cover the cost of eye exams and glasses for kids in need in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming - helping them perform better academically and be better prepared for life.

How Little Peeps Works

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To leverage your investment and increase impact, Mountain Health Gives is working to partner with a national network to obtain clinical and eyeglass discounts where available. We are committed to being wise stewards of the funds entrusted to us, so we will use all available means to stretch our funding dollars.

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How Little Peeps Works 

  • Little Peeps and a school district agree to set up a Little Peeps voucher system

  • Little Peeps and school district approach a local optometrist and ask them to agree to accept our vouchers as payment for an eye exam and glasses

  • School vision screens kids and identifies which kids need a follow-up eye exam and possibly glasses

  • School sends names, grades, and schools list to Little Peeps

  • Little Peeps sends lists of kids to clinic by email

  • Little Peeps sends voucher packets to school that contain voucher, go-home letter, ABCs of vision care from Prevent Blindness, and feedback card

  • Families call clinic and set up appointment, telling clinic they’ll be using Little Peeps

  • Clinic makes sure child is on list

  • Child comes in for care

  • Clinic is sure to charge any insurance the family does have first before charging Mountain Health Gives

  • Clinic charges Mountain Health Gives the remainder of the charge (or the full charge if family has no insurance)

  • Mountain Health Gives pays bill in full – payment will come from Mountain Health Co-op officially

How Little Peeps Works For...

School Districts
Optometrists
Two Pair Program

Little Peeps Serves 3 States!

Montana, Idaho & Wyoming

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The Little Peeps program, which provides eye exams and glasses to kids in need free of charge, held its pilot project Spring 2023 in Helena, Montana. 14 kids, identified by school nurses through a vision screening as needing follow-up care received comprehensive eye exams by a qualified optometrist and glasses free of charge.

During the 2023-24 School-Year, the program is launching around the area. If your school district is in need of vision care for kids, ages 0-18, including vision screenings, eye exams, and glasses, please click the button to the right and complete the online form to begin the process.

Helena 6th-grader "Jenna" received an eye exam & glasses FREE OF CHARGE through the Little Peeps pilot project in May 2023

"It was a pleasure to work with you. Thank you again from all of us at Pine Creek School!" - Principal Kim DeBruycker

"We so appreciate this project that looks like it may have a slight bit of love behind it."

- School Nurse Dawn Cassidy

"Your organization is making such an amazing impact on our county's kids!"

- Optometrist Dr. Marisa Hess

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Does your community need Little Peeps?

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Click above to see "Jenna" try on her glasses for the first time! 

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More "Little Peeps" at recent vision screening events!

Why Little Peeps?

1 in 4

School-aged Children

have a vision problem that, if left undetected and untreated, will affect their learning and personal development

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Early detection of vision problems can lead to more effective treatment overall. Common vision problems for children include:

 

  • vision loss,

  • amblyopia (lazy eye),

  • strabismus (misalignment of the eyes),

  • refractive errors (nearsightedness and farsightedness),

  • astigmatism,

  • and more

 

Early detection and corrective measures can help prevent these problems and more from creating long-term issues for children, giving them the opportunity to achieve better academically and keep pace with their peers.

Vision Changes
Everything

"Untreated childhood vision disorders can impair a child’s physical and cognitive development and acquisition of learning skills, with long-term effects on educational outcomes, hobbies, sports, and job opportunities."

 

- Prevent Blindness America

The COVID-19 pandemic led to temporary changes to qualifications for Medicaid, which currently covers 289,028 children throughout our footprint.

 

These qualifications will soon change and trigger disenrollment of many of those who currently rely on the program to support their health and wellness. This will include thousands of children who will no longer be provided with the resources to cover the cost of eye exams and eyeglasses.

Our Kids Need Help

A look at the numbers

Children cannot help whether or not their family has health insurance. An estimated 52,420 children are uninsured in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming.

Launched School-Year 2023-24!

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