Every 15 minutes someone in the UK is told that they are losing, or have permanently lost, their sight. They will be left to face one of the most difficult questions of their lives - "what now?"
The pressure of continued rising demand for services, coupled with shrinking budgets, presents health services across the UK with a formidable challenge. This is particularly the case for ophthalmology departments. In our 'See the need. Sight loss advisers: improving patient outcomes through cost-effective care' report, we show how at this critical time, the role of sight loss advisers’ offers hospitals an innovative solution to fulfil an unmet need and ensure nobody faces sight loss alone.
‘Being there when it matters’ highlights that 94 per cent of the public expect to be referred to a sight loss adviser if they found out they were losing their sight. Unfortunately, this is not the case with sight loss advisers unavailable at various places across the country. The report features a number of powerful stories from people who have experienced losing their sight and sets out clearly why a sight loss adviser service is so important.
Sight loss advisers play a vital role in supporting blind and partially sighted people. ‘Hanging by a Thread’ sets out how short term and complex funding arrangements of sight loss adviser services in England mean that many essential services are unfortunately under threat.