Envision Research Institute Announces New Research Fellow Who Will Focus on Mental Health

By Holly Herring • Dec 07, 2021

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Envision Research Institute Announces New Research Fellow Who Will Focus on Mental Health
 
Pitt Plastics research fellow will continue efforts to study the benefits of mental health care on patients adjusting to vision loss

Headshot of Emma Rangel Medina
 
Wichita, Kan. – Envision is proud to announce, Emma Rangel, as the latest fellow selected to conduct research at the Gigi & Carl Allen Envision Research Institute (ERI) in Wichita, Kansas. Rangel has been working as a clinical psychologist in the low vision department of the Mexican Institute of Ophthalmology and will develop research to study the process of coping with a diagnosis that leads to a life-long condition of vision loss including blindness. Her fellowship is generously sponsored by Pitt Plastics. 

“We’re honored to bring Emma Rangel to the team at the Envision Research Institute as our newest research fellow,” said Ron Schuchard, PhD, FARVO, ERI Executive Director. “Her research investigations have not been well studied and will therefore be crucial to the advancement in care for people who are blind or visually impaired.”
 
The focus of her research is to help people with blindness and visual impairments adjust to their new life with vision loss through appropriate mental health care that meets their individual needs. Through better coping of vision loss, the individual with new vision loss is likely to accept and better engage in blind and vision rehabilitation services that lead to a better quality of life. In addition, the individual is more likely to engage in programs (e.g., monthly support programs and programs that allow continuation of hobbies before the vision loss) that provide emotional support during the process of adjusting to the vision loss. By conducting her research at the Envision Research Institute, Rangel has the opportunity to collaborate with leading vision rehabilitation specialists and share her experience for the benefit of people who are blind or visually impaired across the nation.
 
“I look forward to utilizing the impressive resources available at the Envision Research Institute to further my research,” said Rangel. “Mental health has been an important topic in society, especially recently, and I have witnessed how adjusting to changes in vision can be difficult. It is crucial to understand the whole picture of care needed for our patients which includes not only their physical health but their mental health as well.”
 
Rangel has earned a degree in clinical psychology from the Autonomous University of QuerĂ©taro and is currently pursuing a degree in clinical and health psychology from Ibero-American University Foundation. She has eight years of experience in mental health care for people with chronic degenerative diseases such as kidney disease and cancer. Rangel has also developed mental health intervention strategies and support groups for the QuerĂ©taro State Transplant Center and the Teleton Children’s Oncology Hospital.
 
Additional details about the ERI and its postdoctoral fellowship program can be found online at research.envisionus.com
 
About Envision: Envision promotes advocacy and independence for those who are blind or low vision. Founded in 1933, Envision is one of the largest employers of individuals with vision loss in the nation. Headquartered in Wichita, Kan., Envision’s mission is to improve the quality of life and provide inspiration and opportunity for people who are blind or visually impaired through employment, outreach, rehabilitation, education and research. For more information, visit www.envisionus.com.