This data tool provides information about blind and partially sighted people and those at risk of sight loss at a local level throughout the UK.

Download the latest version of our Sight Loss Data Tool in the zipfile below.

The RNIB’s Sight Loss Data Tool is the UK’s biggest collection of eye health datasets. It collates a wide range of publicly available datasets and allows users to view local area data easily in a report or as data tables.

Version 4 reports are formatted as accessible word documents telling a tailored story about the area through key statistics. All the data is still available in the excel tool, along with the custom tables which allows users to compare data for up to ten areas.

With the Sight Loss Data Tool, you can read the report for, or find the data by local authority, region or country. Datasets include:

  • The estimated number of people living with severe sight loss and projected change

  • The number of people registered as blind or partially sighted by age group

  • The estimated number of people living with sight threatening eye conditions and projected change

  • The number of local ophthalmology appointments by health authority area

  • The estimated cost of sight loss

  • Demographic data

The Sight Loss Data Tool was downloaded by over 2,000 unique users in 2018. It is a vital evidence source for a wide range of organisations in the sight loss sector and supports work across all elements of the sector including campaigning, service improvement and fundraising.

What’s new in Version 4.3?

Published in March 2021, all the local authority reports have been updated with over 200 accessible word reports available in the version 4.3 zip file. Alongside this, datasets available through the Excel Data File have been updated too.

Please note, no data in the newly released data tool will show the impact of the coronavirus pandemic due to the time lag in published data. It is anticipated that the influence of the pandemic on health services will become more evident as data for 2020/21 begins to be published. This will be included in the next update.

Some of the key data updates include:

  • Data from the 2020 registers of blind and partially sighted people for England, published in February 2021. At the national level the number of new registrations has increased but the total number on the registers has decreased. This may be due to data quality issues within authorities responsible for holding the registers.

  • Data for the 2018/19 register of blind and partially sighted people for Wales. As with England, at the national level there appears to be a decrease in the total numbers on the registers. Again, this may be due to data quality issues within authorities responsible for holding the registers.

  • Living with sight loss estimates updated with 2021 population projections, including children and young people, people of working age and older people.

  • Sight condition and health condition estimates updated with 2021 population projections

  • Certification of vision impairment data for 2018/19 in England

  • Outpatient and inpatient activity data for 2019/20 in Scotland, Northern Ireland and England.

  • Eye clinic ECLO coverage for 2021

  • Benefits data for 2020 (Personal Independence Payment and Disability Living Allowance)

  • SEN data for CYP with vision impairment in 2020

  • NHS sight test data for 2019/20 in Scotland and Northern Ireland

  • Risk factor health data sets such as smoking prevalence updated to 2019 and 2020.

Schedule of updates

This Sight Loss Data Tool is updated as new data becomes available. The next update is scheduled for early 2022.

Why use the Sight Loss Data Tool?

Our Sight Loss Data Tool supports the work of the UK Vision Strategy and RNIB. It is available for you to use free of charge.

By providing robust evidence on sight loss and those at risk of sight loss at a local level, the data tool can support a range of activities across the public, charity and private sectors including:

  • fundraising

  • influencing

  • marketing and communications

  • service planning and development

One key activity supported via the Sight Loss Data Tool is building an evidence base for health commissioning. Each local authority is responsible for maintaining a Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA), which reports on the health and wellbeing needs of local people. It also looks ahead at emerging challenges and projected need in the future.

We want to make sure the needs of blind and partially sighted people and those at risk of sight loss are taken into account in these planning documents.

Contact us

We believe that providing good evidence at a local level is important and we plan to further develop the Sight Loss Data Tool in the future. If you have any feedback or suggestions about how we can improve this resource, please email us at [email protected].