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Children's Spectacle Subsidy

Help paying for eye tests and glasses for children 15 years and younger who have eyesight problems

The New Zealand Ministry of Health can help pay for eye tests, glasses and eye patches for children aged 15 years and under who have eyesight problems. This is called the children’s spectacle subsidy. Enable New Zealand manages the children’s spectacle subsidy on behalf of the Ministry of Health.

The children’s spectacle subsidy is a payment to help families with the cost of vision services (as above) for eligible children 15 years of age and under. The subsidy also covers repairs to glasses.

Applying for the children’s spectacle subsidy: What you need to know

  • Whānau, family, parents or guardians can apply for the subsidy.
  • The Ministry of Health has guidelines about who can receive the subsidy.
  • You apply for the subsidy when taking your child to an optometrist or eye specialist (ophthalmologist) for an eye test.
  • The optometrist or eye specialist must be registered with Enable New Zealand to claim the subsidy for your child.
  • Enable New Zealand pays the subsidy to the optometrist or eye specialist.
  • If the subsidy does not cover the full cost of the eye test and glasses, you will need to pay the difference to the optometrist or ophthalmologist.

You can find more information below.

Ministry of Health children’s spectacle subsidy guidelines and manuals

Children’s spectacle subsidy | Ministry of Health NZ (

Contracts and service specifications | Ministry of Health NZ

Enable New Zealand FAQs and children’s spectacle subsidy brochure for whānau, family, parent or guardian

Children’s spectacle subsidy questions and answers

Enable New Zealand Children’s Spectacle Subsidy Brochure (PDF, 2.31MB, 2 pages)Image of Children's Spectacle Subsidy brochure

Disability funding information about the children’s spectacle subsidy

Registering with the Ministry of Health’s children’s spectacle subsidy service: Information for Optometrists and Ophthalmologists | Disability Funding Information (

Finding an optometrist

New Zealand Association of Optometrists (

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