New resource for Local Eye Health Networks and Local Optical Committees

23 February 2016

A new resource called “People with learning disabilities and eye care – what every LEHN and LOC needs to know” has been launched by the national sight loss and disability charity, SeeAbility with the support of LOCSU.

Research estimates that adults with learning disabilities are ten times more likely to have serious sight problems than other people. For children, the figure grows to 28 times more likely.

Despite this, many people with learning disabilities are not receiving the eye care they need. The new resource outlines how LEHN’s and LOC’s can work with SeeAbility to improve access to eye care for people with learning disabilities in their area by:

  • Suggesting enhancements to community sight tests and targeted work in special schools for people with learning disabilities to be included in Eye Health Needs Assessments.
  • Discussing with Commissioners about dedicated services for hard-to-reach groups
  • Promoting the LOCSU community eye care pathway for people with learning disabilities over the age of 14. It has been successfully piloted in a number of areas and provides trained optometrists, reasonably adjusted appointments and support and accessible information for the individual.

SeeAbility and LOCSU are already working with and supporting a number of LEHN’s and CCG’s around the country. This will help to deliver the LEHN and England Vision Strategy ambition to improve access and detect eye conditions early in hard to reach groups.

By transforming eye care for people with learning disabilities there will be savings on wider health and social care costs, reducing numbers of people being seen in hospital for regular sight tests and preventing high level health and social care needs arising from untreated sight loss. 

The resource can be found on SeeAbility’s website along with a host of other information on eye care for people with learning disabilities: https://www.seeability.org/uploads/files/PDFs_Books_non_Easy_Read/LEHNs_resource.pdf

For more information contact Stephen Kill at s.kill@seeability.org

-Ends-

 

MEDIA ENQUIRIES

For more information about the new resource contact Stephen Kill at SeeAbility – 07738 040307. Email: s.kill@seeability.org

Media enquiries at SeeAbility, please contact: Nick Pryce, Media and Communications Officer, 01372 755047 or 07854952377. Email: n.pryce@SeeAbility.org

Media enquiries at LOCSU, please contact: Chris McGachy, Head of Communications, 020 7549 2053 or email: cmcgachy@locsu.co.uk.

NOTES TO EDITORS

SeeAbility

•SeeAbility is a UK charity supporting people with sight loss and multiple disabilities to live the life they choose.

•SeeAbility enriches the lives of people with sight loss and multiple disabilities by providing specialist support enabling as much independence in life as possible. They support people to develop the skills and make the choices they want to enjoy a fulfilling life.

•SeeAbility shares their expert knowledge to raise awareness and increase access to eye care and vision services for people with learning disabilities.

•Visit www.seeability.org. SeeAbility is a registered charity number 255913

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