PurposeTo describe the prevalence and associations of presenting near vision impairment (NVI) in Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.MethodsA sample of 3098 non-Indigenous Australians (aged 50-98 years) and 1738 Indigenous Australians (aged 40-92 years) living in 30 randomly selected Australian sites were examined as part of the population-based National Eye Health Survey (NEHS). Binocular presenting NVI was defined as near vision worse than N8 (20/50).ResultsIn total, 4817 participants (99.6% of the total sample, comprising 3084 non-Indigenous Australians and 1733 Indigenous Australians) had complete data on near visual acuity. The overall weighted prevalence of presenting NVI was 21.6% (95% CI: 19.6, 23.8) in non-Indigenous Australians and 34.7% (95% CI: 29.2, 40.8) among Indigenous Australians. In the non-Indigenous population, higher odds of presenting NVI were associated with older age (OR=1.68 per 10 years, P<0.001), fewer years of education (OR=0.95 per year, P<0.001) and residing in Remote geographical areas (OR=1.71, P=0.003) after multivariate adjustments. Among Indigenous Australians, older age (OR=1.69 per 10 years, P<0.001), fewer years of education (OR=0.91 per year, P=0.003) and residing in Inner Regional (OR=2.01, P=0.008), Outer Regional (OR=2.17, P=<0.001) and Remote geographical areas (OR=1.72, P=0.03) were associated with greater odds of presenting NVI.ConclusionsNVI represents a notable public health concern in Australia, affecting approximately 20% of non-Indigenous Australian and one-third of Indigenous Australian adults.