New LOCSU database will make 'watertight' case for Community Services

29 April 2015

LOCSU has unveiled plans for a new national database to support the case for the universal commissioning of community eye services.

The Data Repository project, part funded by the Central (LOC) Fund, will demonstrate the cost effectiveness of community services and provide a compelling evidence base to NHS Commissioners for the adoption of high-street services at scale.

Outlining details of the initiative LOCSU Managing Director, Katrina Venerus, said: “This will be a real game changer for community optics that could put paid to the fragmented, piecemeal approach by commissioners.”

“While the current OptoManager IT platform collects data from individual services, it does not offer the global perspective and real-time, in-depth comparisons that will be provided by the new Data Repository.”

Venerus said that as well as demonstrating the benefit of commissioning community services, the new initiative will allow outcome comparisons across different services; by geography, age group and ethnicity. It will also be possible for other reference data to be fed into the repository, for example disease prevalence, to answer specific research questions.

“The anonymised national data will be extremely valuable to the whole sector. In addition to supporting the case for universal adoption of certain community services by CCGs and strengthening the argument for an extended role for optometrists and opticians in primary care, it will also become very useful from a public health and research perspective.”

“We are delighted to have financial support from the Central (LOC) Fund to allow us to take this project forward and to make anonymised data accessible to relevant stakeholders and interested parties outwith LOCSU.”

LOCSU said Webstar Health and its parent company Cegedim Rx, who have proven expertise in this area, will utilise a tried-and-tested data integration and business analytics platform that will integrated with the existing OptoManager system, A Data Repository Steering Group with experts from across the sector will be established to take the project forward when it is up and running later this year.

 MEDIA ENQUIRIES

Chris McGachy, LOCSU Communications Manager, email cmcgachy@locsu.co.uk, or telephone 020 7549 2053.

NOTES TO EDITORS

LOCSU
The Local Optical Committee Support Unit (LOCSU) works with the Optical Confederation to support Local Optical Committees (LOCs) across England in developing local eye health services. LOCSU helps community optometrists and opticians work with local commissioners to make community eye services accessible for patients and cost effective for the NHS. LOCs represent the interests of Optometrists, Dispensing Opticians and Contractors of Ophthalmic services in local areas.

Central (LOC) Fund
The Central (LOC) Fund was set up in 1973 and exists to provide finance for long-term and single issues which are considered to be of benefit for the ophthalmic profession as a whole. The Fund collects donations from optometrists and LOCs and distributes them as grants to organisations and initiatives that benefit the whole profession.

Webstar Health/Cegedim Rx
Webstar Health is an established provider of management systems for locally commissioned services in Optometry and Pharmacy by CCGs, Local Authorities and NHS England. The Company has over 12 years’ experience in the field and a proven track record. Cegedim Rx, Webstar Health’s parent company, is part of the Cegedim Group, a major supplier of healthcare technology and information services across Europe and is the market leading supplier of software solutions and computer services to UK pharmacies.

OptoManager
OptoManager is a package of web platforms that have been developed for the Local Optical Committee Support Unit (LOCSU) by Webstar Health. The technology, used by the large majority of LOC Companies virtually eliminates manual administration of optical services, helps with data collection and generates insightful performance reports. OptoManager also manages billing and payment disbursement of the standard pathways.

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