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The JVN Advantage

The Joslin Diabetes Center is committed to providing the best diabetes care available anywhere. A critical component of diabetes care at the Joslin Diabetes Center is the evaluation of your eyes for complications that may arise due to diabetes. This level of superior care includes retinal imaging using the Joslin Vision NetworkTM (JVN) Diabetes Eye Care Program. Large clinical studies prove the value of current eye treatments. With regular and careful follow-up combined with timely and appropriate laser surgery and medical treatment, the risk for severe visual loss can be reduced by over 95%. The JVN provides you with the expertise of leaders in diabetes eye health care and research, all working to preserve the vision of patients with diabetes.

The JVN has been proven to significantly increase access to care and facilitate appropriate and efficient use of specialty care providers. Measurable results showing improved care for diabetes are indicators that the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA), employers and CMS (Medicare) highly value. Often, these results serve as the bases for pay-for-performance programs that reward providers for improved care.

With JVN, Joslin researchers developed a diabetes eye care program to provide patients regular retinal evaluations within a primary care physician’s, endocrinologist’s, or other medical practice without the need for pupil dilation. By reducing barriers to eye care, JVN increases the rate of ongoing disease surveillance and facilitates appropriate and timely referral of patients to eye care specialists when needed.

JVN imagers are trained and certified by Joslin to take photographs accurately and gather key patient data. Images and data are transmitted securely to the JVN Reading and Evaluation Center at Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston. There the images are evaluated by an expert team of ophthalmologists, optometrists and clinical staff. Utilizing the latest imaging technology, Joslin’s expert team interprets images, identifies specific levels of diabetic retinopathy and provides appropriate treatment guidance for each patient. The Joslin team also identifies ocular pathologies other than diabetic retinopathy if observed. 
JVN is based on more than a decade of research, development and testing. The accuracy of JVN as a diagnostic tool for diabetic retinopathy has been rigorously described and validated in several scientific peer review journals. These reports and other publications have provided full evidence of JVN’s clinical effectiveness and its ability to:

  • Compare favorably with “Gold Standard” 35 mm stereo slides with dilated pupils (Ophthalmology 2001)
  • Compare favorably with clinical exam through dilated pupils by retinal specialist (Retina 2003)
  • Provide annual follow-up retina exam with retinal specialist when previously documented no or mild diabetic retinopathy (American Journal of Ophthalmology 2005)
  • Enhance an existing eye care professional referral program in increasing the rate of surveillance and treatment of diabetic retinopathy (Diabetes Care 2005)
  • Identify nondiabetic eye disease as compared with clinical exam through dilated pupils by retinal specialist (Ophthalmology May 2006)
  • Match favorably the sensitivity and specificity of dilated retinal exams for detecting diabetic retinopathy (Diabetes Care, October 2006)

Page last updated: October 14, 2019