Free or low-cost glasses for more South Australians

More South Australians with eye conditions can now access free or low-cost glasses and contact lenses through the State Government’s GlassesSA program.

In response to feedback from customers and optometrists, the Marshall Liberal Government has expanded the program and introduced:

  • Free standard glasses for eligible Aboriginal customers
  • Optional upgrades to standard glasses for all eligible customers
  • A contribution of $50 for eligible children who choose to upgrade their frames
  • Thinner lenses for standard glasses, subject to prescription criteria, with the scheme now providing a $50 contribution for customers who need this type of lens

Since the program was introduced in 2016, GlassesSA has helped deliver more than 19,000 pairs of glasses to disadvantaged and vulnerable South Australians.

Previously, customers did not have the option to upgrade frames or lenses from the standard GlassesSA offering at their own cost. Aboriginal customers also had to pay a gap under the previous arrangement and all eligible children couldn’t upgrade their frames.

Minister for Human Services, Michelle Lensink said the changes to the program make GlassesSA more accessible and practical, at a time when South Australians need help.

“Many South Australians are hurting right now, so the ability for eligible South Australians to get free or low-cost glasses is a big help,” said Minister Lensink.

“We’re really aiming to increase the uptake of glasses by Aboriginal South Australians, so we’ve introduced no gap for standard glasses for those eligible.”

Customers are now also provided greater choice of frames in a range of sizes, and greater flexibility to upgrade frames and lenses. Previously, customers could not pay extra for any upgrades or treatments on their glasses, as the glasses were provided as a complete package only.

“If they wish to, customers can now upgrade their lenses or frames at their own cost, or use their existing frames, so this expanded program is providing more flexibility,” said Minister Lensink.

GlassesSA is now also enabling greater choice in children’s frames.

“An additional $50 per pair of children’s glasses will be provided to young people who choose to upgrade their frames. It’s really great news because when children and young have a greater range of options for glasses, they feel happier about wearing them,” said Minister Lensink.

For more information, and to find a participating optometrist, visit

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