LOCSU Annual Report 2013/14 - page 26

LOCSU Annual Report 2013/14
26
CASE STUDY – Learning Disability Pathway
Work to be done with Commissioners
on uptake of Learning Disability
Pathway
Despite Public Health England making preventable
sight loss a priority, health inequalities are still not top
of the commissioning agenda – with very few CCGs
commissioning dedicated services for people with
learning disabilities (PwLD).
Eye Care Pathways for PwLD remain rare among CCGs.
But one exemplar – set up with LOCSU leadership – is
in DurhamDales, Easington and Sedgefield (DDES).
LOCSU played a major role leading a task and
finish group within the Local Eye Health Network
(LEHN) along with the LOC Lead to introduce a pilot
programme in the DDES CCG area in May 2014.
The service targets patients with moderate to severe
learning disabilities. Ten practices have signed up as
sub-contractors to the regional LOC Company, PE(NE),
to provide the pathway and are expected to see about
200 patients.
The strong links that have been forged with
community groups and disability groups, through the
LEHN, have resulted in a lot of interest being taken
in the pathway. TomHedley, LOC Lead, explained:
“PE(NE) was just being formed when this service was
first discussed and the fusion of support from LOCSU,
SeeAbility, the regional company and the LOC gave the
concept critical mass and made it a reality.
“PE(NE) and the Optical Lead have given their full
support to this venture and the aim is to encourage
neighbouring CCGs to adopt this as there is a stated
interest and shared objective to deliver better eye care
for this hard-to-reach group. This team effort – from
LOCSU, the LOC Company and the LOC – is the way
forward and our professions can benefit in many ways.”
Stephen Kill, Eye Care and Vision Regional Manager,
SeeAbility, said: “Zoe has played a key role in the
preparations for delivering a pilot of the LOCSU Eye
Care Pathway for Adults with Learning Disabilities in
DDES. She has helped turn the pilot from a possibility
into a reality encouraging the LOC to collaborate
to gain support and gather the evidence base and
she acted as a focal point. Zoe has made a huge
contribution to this life-changing initiative for people
with learning disabilities in the DDES area.”
Meanwhile, a pilot service involving twelve optical
practices and four domiciliary providers in Kensington
and Chelsea, Hammersmith and Fulham and
Westminster continues to gather positive evidence of
its impact.
The LOCs involved have worked closely with the three
local community teams for People with Learning
Disabilities to promote the service to people with
learning disabilities, family carers and paid supporters.
Initial findings from the pilot highlight that the
majority of patients are not accessing regular eye
care. More than half of those seen were prescribed
spectacles to improve visions, 17% for the first time.
One third had a new eye health issue identified with
29% referred on to another service.
Patients and carers commented positively on the
service, with optometrists agreeing that the pathway
gave themmore scope to meet people’s needs.
LOCSU and SeeAbility are now exploring collaborative
commissioning partnerships to extend the pathway to
neighbouring CCGs in West London.
How to
arrange eye
tests for
people with
learning
disabilities.
Everyone should
have an eye test
every 2 years.
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