Updates to RNIB’s Sight Loss Data Tool

Post date: 
Thursday, 3 May 2018

Our Sight Loss Data Tool has been updated this spring, including figures for new registrations and ophthalmology appointments in 2017, and CVI figures for 2016.

Accessed by over 8,000 people each year, the ever-popular Sight Loss Data Tool collates hundreds of eye health and sight loss datasets, providing them in digestible local authority reports or data tables with regional and national figures.

Notable trends

Registration in England

There has been a slight decrease in the number of new registrations in England compared with three years ago. However, there were increases in the 5-17 and 65-74 age bands.

There are also regional differences, with Yorkshire and the Humber seeing 26 per cent more new registrations in 2017 compared with 2014.

Registration in Northern Ireland

For the first time, we have registration figures for Health and Social Care Boards in Northern Ireland. These registers record the number of people in receipt of services and aren't directly comparable with registers in the rest of the UK. Notable numbers include:

  • 752 new registrations were recorded in 2017.
  • 7,900 people are recorded on the registers with a higher proportion recorded as blind (61 per cent) than partially sighted (39 per cent).

This is different to the rest of the UK where the split is closer to 50/50 and is likely to be the result of the different registration process.

Ophthalmology appointments

Over the past five years, the number of outpatient ophthalmology appointments in the UK has increased by 19 per cent to almost 8.5 million appointments in 2016-17.

Much of this increase has been driven by England and Scotland, while Northern Ireland has seen a decrease in appointment numbers over the past five years.

The Sight Loss Data tool will continue to be updated quarterly, so make sure you download a new version of the Data Tool regularly.

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