Category Archives: client news: SeeAbility

Sheffield City Council Takes Care of Eye Care

 

 

 

 

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Date: January 2010

Sheffield City Council Takes Care of Eye Care

for People With Learning Disabilities

Sheffield City Council is the first local authority in the UK to fund a worker to support people with learning disabilities to get the eye care they need.

 

One in three people with learning disabilities has a sight problem, yet this group is least likely to get the help they need, according to SeeAbility, formerly The Royal School for the Blind. As part of its national eye2eye campaign, SeeAbility has joint funded the post of Sensory Development Worker since 2005. The post is now fully funded and permanently part of Sheffield’s Community Learning Disability team.

 

Keith McKinstrie, Service Manager, Social Care, Joint Learning Disabilities Service for Sheffield City Council, explains how this will make a difference, “Our work with SeeAbility has enabled us to uncover sensory impairments in people with learning disabilities who we thought we knew very well. A sight test can enable things to suddenly improve for a person.” Sensory Development Worker Pauline Hargreaves explains what she will be doing to improve care for people with learning disabilities, “The City Council want me to concentrate on raising awareness of the eye care needs of people with learning disabilities. As well as supporting individuals to have eye tests, I’ll be offering training for support staff across supported living and residential care services. It is great to have wholehearted backing from the City Council to support this work.”

SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye manager for the Yorkshire and Humber region Laura Christie says, “Pauline Hargreaves has a very specialized role. She supports people and their carers to get the right eye care, builds links with opticians and helps them develop the skills they need to work with this group. Pauline has also developed links with the sensory impairment team who help people who have lost some sight. It’s fantastic that the work of the eye 2 eye campaign has been embedded in Sheffield’s services for people with a learning disability”

 

The work done by SeeAbility has made a real impact in Sheffield, making contact with over 1000 people with learning disabilities and more than 2500 professionals in health, social and eye care. Now that the post is permanent this can continue. Jane Hobson, Development Manager for day and accommodation services within Sheffield City Council works closely with Pauline Hargreaves. She says, “Working alongside SeeAbility in Sheffield is such a valuable experience on so many levels. For the people we support it means improved eye care, access to resources and the opportunity to have eye surgery where previously it would not have been considered. For carers it enables them to get access to the right equipment and appropriate support services involved.” One carer says, “Our experience was really positive and has made me aware of how much can be done to enhance the lives of people like my son by getting them proper eye care.”

Keith McKinstrie concludes, “If you are serious about addressing health issues for people with learning disabilities, sensory impairment is a key part.” And Sensory Development Worker Pauline Hargreaves has a message for all local councils, “Look at what we’re doing here in Sheffield and see how it is helping people with learning disabilities. Improved eye care can lead to a better quality of life and empower people to do more for themselves. I feel that people are lucky to get this support in Sheffield but worry about all the other people with learning disabilities in the country who aren’t getting the eye care and support they desperately need”

 

– ENDS –

Issued by SeeAbility, for further information please contact:

Monica Cornforth on 020 8997 1261 or 07811 147 192

NOTES TO EDITORS

  • SeeAbility is the operating name for The Royal School for the Blind, a national charity which has for over 200 years provided support for people who are blind or partially sighted and have additional disabilities.
  • SeeAbility currently provides a range of services in; Birmingham, Bristol, Devon, East Sussex, Hampshire, Humberside, London, Sheffield, Somerset, Surrey and West Sussex.
  • SeeAbility offers a wide range of specialised residential, community and rehabilitation services for people with a visual impairment and additional disabilities. Our aim is to provide each individual with the support they need to develop essential life skills for greater independence and a fulfilling life.
  • SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Campaign, a community-based initiative, is improving eye care and vision for people with a learning disability.
  • Look-Up www.lookupinfo.org provides information and advice on eye care and vision for people with learning disabilities.
  • SeeAbility’s Central Office is based in Epsom, Surrey. For further information call 01372 755000 or visit www.seeability.org

 

 

People With Learning Disabilities get the Chance to Speak Up about Eyecare

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Date: 14 December 2009

People With Learning Disabilities get the Chance to Speak Up about Eyecare

An inquiry into eye care services for people with learning disabilities is top of the agenda for The All-Party Parliamentary Group for Eye Health and Visual Impairment and the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Learning Disability in January 2010.

 

1 in 3 people with a learning disability has a sight problem yet this group is least likely to get the help they need, according to SeeAbility, formerly The Royal School for the Blind. Paula Spinks-Chamberlain, SeeAbility Director of Information and Advisory Services says,

“SeeAbility launched the eye 2 eye Campaign in 2005 because people with learning disabilities were not getting the eye care that they need. Pilot projects have helped in some parts of the country, but we view the All-Party Parliamentary Groups Inquiry as a major breakthrough that could put eye care for people with learning disabilities at the top of the national agenda.”

 

The Inquiry will investigate:

  • The number of people with a learning disability who have sight problems and the sight problems that they have.
  • Why it is important for people with learning disabilities to have good vision and eye health.
  • Whether people with learning disabilities have regular sight tests and if not, why not.
  • If people with learning disabilities find it difficult to access community NHS eye care services and barriers to access.
  • How eye care services could be improved for this group.

 

Currently the NHS sight test of around 30 minutes does not provide sufficient time or flexibility to test people with severe or profound learning disabilities.

 

Speaking at the launch of the Inquiry, the Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Eye Health and Visual Impairment Sandra Gidley MP (Liberal Democrat, Romsey) said:

 

“1 in 3 people with a learning disability have some form of visual impairment, yet many of these vulnerable people have never had a sight test. This inquiry will examine why this group of people, who have a high risk of sight problems, are not getting the eye care they deserve. We hope to identify solutions and educate policy makers and health and social care professionals about this issue and encourage action to be taken.”

 

– ENDS –

Issued by SeeAbility. For further information please contact:

Monica Cornforth on 020 8997 1261 or 07811 147 192

NOTES TO EDITORS

  • The Inquiry will involve up to two oral evidence sessions.
  • Evidence will be given by interested parties including people with learning disabilities, professionals, Department of Health representatives and representatives of PCTs.
  • Timescales:

Deadline for written evidence 22 January

Deadline for submissions from those giving oral evidence 12 January 2010

Inquiry on 19th January 2010 tbc

Short report on initial findings by early March.

  • There are an estimated 210,000 people with severe and profound learning disabilities in England: around 65,000 children and young people, 120,000 adults of working age and 25,000 older people – Valuing People, Department of Health (2001)
  • Better health for people with learning disabilities is a key priority in the Government’s latest strategy, ‘Valuing People Now’: “There is clear evidence that most people with learning disabilities have poorer health than the rest of the population and are more likely to die at a younger age. Their access to the NHS is often poor.”
  • SeeAbility is the operating name for The Royal School for the Blind, a national charity which has for over 200 years provided support for people who are blind or partially sighted and have additional disabilities.
  • SeeAbility currently provides a range of services in; Birmingham, Bristol, Devon, East Sussex, Hampshire, Humberside, London, Sheffield, Somerset, Surrey and West Sussex.
  • SeeAbility offers a wide range of specialised residential, community and rehabilitation services for people with a visual impairment and additional disabilities. Our aim is to provide each individual with the support they need to develop essential life skills for greater independence and a fulfilling life.
  • SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Campaign, a community-based initiative, is improving eye care and vision for people with a learning disability.
  • Look-Up www.lookupinfo.org provides information and advice on eye care and vision for people with learning disabilities.
  • SeeAbility’s Central Office is based in Epsom, Surrey. For further information call 01372 755000 or visit www.seeability.org

 

 

Scott Watkin, National Co-director for Learning Disabilities, says People With Learning Disabilities Need Good Eyecare

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Date: November 2009

Scott Watkin, National Co-director for Learning Disabilities, says People With Learning Disabilities Need Good Eyecare

Scott Watkin is the Department of Health’s National Co-director for Learning Disabilities. As a person with a learning disability himself, Scott champions the needs of people with learning disabilities. After his recent experience of eye surgery, Scott is keen to see that good eye care is on the agenda for everyone, whatever their ability. Martin Thomas of SeeAbility has recently spoken to Scott who says “If you get the chance to improve your sight – go for it. It changed my life: it’ll change your life too”. Read on to find out more about the messages Scott wants to share to improve eye care.

Scott Watkin has Keratoconus. This causes the cornea, the clear layer at the front of the eye, to thin and become cone shaped. These changes cause:

  • Blurred and distorted vision.
  • Difficulties with reading.
  • Problems with glare.

Keratoconus can be treated with contact lenses up to a certain point. After a while the contact lenses no longer give clear vision and a corneal graft is needed. This is the situation Scott found himself in. Martin Thomas of SeeAbility says, “When Scott was first told he would need a corneal graft he was initially reluctant. Scott told me he took a year in making his decision to go ahead with his operation.”

 

Scott knew his sight was deteriorating so at his next hospital visit he made his mind up and decided to have the operation.

 

The next step for Scott was to find out all about the operation. He explains, “They took time to explain the treatment I could have and they made sure I understood what they meant. They took me through all the [eye] tests I needed. They used language I could understand and explained that after my operation my sight wouldn’t improve overnight”.

 

On the day, Scott was apprehensive about the operation. He describes how he felt, “I had been anxious and nervous on the day of the operation and felt unwell.” Scott came through the operation well, and the hospital helped his recovery by listening to and meeting his needs. He explains, “The hospital made reasonable adjustments for me and let me stay overnight after the operation. They also arranged for social care staff to come to my home to apply my eye drops for me in the weeks after my operation”.

 

It has taken around six months for Scott to fully appreciate the difference the operation has made to him. Good eyesight has opened up other possibilities for Scott. He says, “I’m also able to achieve another of my ambitions. I’m thinking of applying for my provisional driving licence”.

 

Scott’s surgery took place at the Queen Victoria Hospital, East Grinstead. Scott comments, “If it wasn’t for the Queen Victoria Hospital I don’t think I’d be where I am now. I really want to express my thanks to them.” Another operation is required for his other eye and Scott speaks confidently of having the operation when necessary.

 

Scott’s positive experience of eye surgery means that he is keen to help other people who are in a similar position. Scott recommends making sure you understand the operation and the effect it will have. He says, “Take your time and make sure that you are supported by someone who knows you”.

Scott is keen to make sure that all people with learning disabilities can access and benefit from the highest quality eye care and general health care. The willingness of the eye care professionals who treated him to take time to communicate clearly made a big difference to Scott and his future. He says, “If it took me a year to come to the decision to have the operation it may take people with more complex needs much longer to come to the same decision. For that to happen you need to have perseverance and people around you to offer you the information you need and emotional support.” Scott concludes, “If you get the chance to improve your sight – go for it. It changed my life: it’ll change your life too”.

SeeAbility’s eye2eye campaign is working to transform eye care for people with learning disabilities by providing information, advice and support for:

  • people with learning disabilities,
  • their families and carers,
  • eye care professionals
  • health and social services staff.

With 1 in 3 people with learning disabilities likely to have sight problem it is vital that people are supported to attend regular eyesight tests and to access eye care services. No-one one is too disabled to get the eye care they need.

For further information about the issues raised in the article go to www.lookupinfo.org or call 01732 755066.

– ENDS –

Issued by SeeAbility, for further information please contact:

Monica Cornforth on 020 8997 1261 or 07811 147 192

NOTES TO EDITORS

  • SeeAbility is the operating name for The Royal School for the Blind, a national charity which has for over 200 years provided support for people who are blind or partially sighted and have additional disabilities.
  • SeeAbility currently provides a range of services in; Birmingham, Bristol, Devon, East Sussex, Hampshire, Humberside, London, Sheffield, Somerset, Surrey and West Sussex.
  • SeeAbility offers a wide range of specialised residential, community and rehabilitation services for people with a visual impairment and additional disabilities. Our aim is to provide each individual with the support they need to develop essential life skills for greater independence and a fulfilling life.
  • SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Campaign, a community-based initiative, is improving eye care and vision for people with a learning disability.
  • Look-Up www.lookupinfo.org provides information and advice on eye care and vision for people with learning disabilities.
  • SeeAbility’s Central Office is based in Epsom, Surrey. For further information call 01372 755000 or visit www.seeability.org

 

Making Eyecare Easier for People with Learning Disabilities

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Date: 9 November 2009

Making Eyecare Easier for People with Learning Disabilities

 

People with learning disabilities now have easier access to better eye care and community optometrists and hospital optometrists and orthoptists have had the chance to improve their skills through specialist training after a successful pilot project in East London. The project has now been commissioned for five years.

A staggering one in three people with a learning disability has a sight problem, yet a minority get regular and effective sight tests according to SeeAbility. This puts many people with learning disabilities at risk of unnecessary sight loss.

In response to this need, NHS Tower Hamlets has introduced a service in both community optometry practices in Tower Hamlets and a specialist clinic at The Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel. The project is supported by SeeAbility, formerly known as The Royal School for the Blind and aims to ensure that adults with learning disabilities gain access to regular and effective sight tests and low vision support.

All community optometrists who take part in the scheme receive an enhanced fee to reflect the longer testing time required and a testing kit provided and funded by the PCT. David Hewlett of FODO says, “People with learning disabilities have the same rights as everyone else in society and ought to be able to access the optical practice of their choice. The NHS contract should be flexible enough to provide for this on a national basis as an additional service.”

The first six months of the pilot project have shown that there is a definite need for the service. Three in four people were prescribed glasses and five of the 25 attending hospital clinics were referred for registration as partially sighted. Poonam Sharma, Tower Hamlets Optometry Advisor comments, “After a very successful eye 2 eye pilot scheme last year, we are very pleased that Tower Hamlets PCT is funding this project. We have already had extremely positive feedback from everyone who used the service.”

Carers felt the benefit from the scheme, making comments such as,

“The eye clinic staff were very patient, and had good communication skills.”

“The optician was friendly, understanding.”

Some carers commented on the thoroughness of the examination:

“They explained clearly what was happening.”

“The tests were appropriate and thorough.”

And results were good too, with comments like:

“Definite improvement. [He] seems to notice more when looking at things.”

“[She] enjoyed the experience. [She is] not frightened of hospitals anymore.”

Paula Spinks-Chamberlain, SeeAbility’s Director of Information and Advisory Services comments, “We are delighted to have been involved with this ground-breaking scheme in Tower Hamlets. It shows Tower Hamlets’ commitment to providing a first class eye health care service to people with a learning disability and their commitment to the equalities agenda. We look forward to working with other PCTs to replicate similar projects throughout the UK.”

Keith Marshall, Eye Health Programme Manager for Tower Hamlets has found benefits from the scheme that go beyond its initial scope: “The primary benefit from this piece of partnership working has been to improve access to eye tests for people with Learning Disabilities by commissioning and delivering appropriately structured eye tests delivered by suitable skilled and trained eye care professionals in the community and in the hospital. This collaboration across primary and secondary care, community health services and the voluntary sector helps the sharing of knowledge, cross-fertilisation of ideas and sharing of best practice.”

SeeAbility’s information website, Look Up provides adults with a learning disability, carers, eye care professionals and health and social care staff with a wealth of information about eye care and vision for people with learning disabilities. For further information visit www.lookupinfo.org

For further information on the Enhanced Primary Care Optometry service in Tower Hamlets please call Tower Hamlets Optometric Adviser Poonam Sharma 0207 092 5830

 

– ENDS –

Issued by SeeAbility, for further information please contact:

Monica Cornforth on 020 8997 1261 or 07811 147 192

NOTES TO EDITORS

  • SeeAbility is the operating name for The Royal School for the Blind, a national charity which has for over 200 years provided support for people who are blind or partially sighted and have additional disabilities.
  • SeeAbility currently provides a range of services in; Birmingham, Bristol, Devon, East Sussex, Hampshire, Humberside, London, Sheffield, Somerset, Surrey and West Sussex.
  • SeeAbility offers a wide range of specialised residential, community and rehabilitation services for people with a visual impairment and additional disabilities. Our aim is to provide each individual with the support they need to develop essential life skills for greater independence and a fulfilling life.
  • SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Campaign, a community-based initiative, is improving eye care and vision for people with a learning disability.
  • Look-Up www.lookupinfo.org provides information and advice on eye care and vision for people with learning disabilities.
  • SeeAbility’s Central Office is based in Epsom, Surrey. For further information call 01372 755000 or visit www.seeability.org
  • NHS Tower Hamlets, in partnership with SeeAbility and Barts and the London NHS Trust has been running a six month pilot project to improve access to eye tests and improve quality of eye services for people with learning disabilities. This was done by commissioning extended eye examinations from community optometrists, who received an accredited training, and providing a specialist clinic in a hospital eye service. A six month pilot began in September 2008.
  • The specialist clinic operates from Royal London Orthoptic department twice a month. Three people with learning disabilities that make them hard to test can be examined each session. People are examined by both an orthoptist and an optometrist to provide the best possible outcome.
  • A SeeAbility eye 2 eye development officer and a learning disability nurse attended clinic appointments over the first 6 months to support staff, and to identify pathways and additional help from low vision support to wearing glasses.

Making it Easier to Examine People With Learning Disabilities

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Date: 2 November 2009

 

Making it Easier to Examine People With Learning Disabilities

Eyecare professionals will find it easier to care for people with learning disabilities thanks to a new initiative from SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Campaign and Kay Pictures. Optometrists testing this group now benefit from 50% off Kay Picture vision tests.

Around 3 in 10 people with learning disabilities have a significant sight problem, yet many do not get regular sight tests. As a result, people with learning difficulties have a high rate of undetected treatable sensory impairments.

Hazel Kay, creator of the test, says, “The Kay Picture Test provides an accurate means of testing the vision of people with learning disabilities using pictures of familiar, everyday objects. Visual acuity measurements are achieved in an easy, quick and fun way, which can allay fears regarding the eye test and help to gain the person’s cooperation and trust with other aspects of the examination.”

Martin Thomas, Manager of the Lookup Information Service says

“We’re pleased with the Kay Picture offer on Lookup as it means that many more optometrists and specialist workers have the chance to purchase Kay cards and extend their skills and services to meet the needs of people who might have been at risk of being excluded from eye sight tests.”

Undetected sight problems mean that people are unable to take part in a range of leisure, work and learning activities that they could otherwise enjoy. They can experience undetected deterioration of their sight, leading to a loss of skills, frustration and isolation. If you want to make a difference, you could:

  • Visit www.lookupinfo.org to download pre and post eye examination forms that assist people with learning disabilities and their carers to make the most of their eye examinations
  • Work through Healthcall Optical’s CET pack, Examining People with Learning Disabilities to improve your skills
  • Register on the Look Up database which gives information about practice facilities for people with learning disabilities.

Order your discount Kay Picture Tests at www.kaypictures.co.uk/more_seeability.html.

Quote ‘SeeAbility offer’ on your order form. See note 9 for details.

– ENDS –

Issued by SeeAbility, for further information please contact:

Monica Cornforth on 020 8997 1261 or 07811 147 192

 

NOTES TO EDITORS

  • ·1. SeeAbility is the operating name for The Royal School for the Blind, a national charity which has for over 200 years provided support for people who are blind or partially sighted and have additional disabilities.
    • ·2. SeeAbility currently provides a range of services in; Birmingham, Bristol, Devon, East Sussex, Hampshire, Humberside, London, Sheffield, Somerset, Surrey and West Sussex.
    • ·3. SeeAbility offers a wide range of specialised residential, community and rehabilitation services for people with a visual impairment and additional disabilities. Our aim is to provide each individual with the support they need to develop essential life skills for greater independence and a fulfilling life.
    • ·4. SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Campaign, a community-based initiative, is improving eye care and vision for people with a learning disability.
  1. Look-Up www.lookupinfo.org provides information and advice on eye care and vision for people with learning disabilities.
  • ·6. SeeAbility’s Central Office is based in Epsom, Surrey. For further information call 01372 755000 or visit www.seeability.org
  1. The Kay Picture Test makes testing quick, easy and provides accurate, reliable visual acuity measurements in the same way as a Snellen letter test. It is an ideal method for those who may have difficulty in responding to more complex tests that require the patient to have a degree of literacy and verbal communication skills.
  2. The testing procedure is similar to procedures that use letters. Pictures can be matched until they are no longer sufficiently visible to be recognised. People with learning disabilities can respond through methods such as signing, pointing, eye gazing or speech. Acuity is then scored using LogMAR or Snellen notation.
  3. The offer is only available to professionals who have registered on the Look Up database or have undertaken Healthcall Optical’s CET: Examining People with Learning Disabilities. Provide a copy of your CET certificate with your order, or confirm that you are registered on the Look Up database. The 50% discount is on the list price of any of the six Kay Picture Test near and distance sets and matching cards when a new service is provided.

 

Lucy’s Story: Enabling adults with learning disabilities to look after their eyes

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 25th 2009

Lucy’s Story: Enabling adults with learning disabilities to look after their eyes

If you work with people with learning disabilities, are you aware of how to support them with their eyecare? People with learning disabilities are more likely to have eye problems, and may be less able to communicate any difficulties. Eye care charity SeeAbility has funded eye 2 eye Community Development Officers in different parts of the UK to raise the profile of eye problems in this group, and to work with people and their carers to improve their eye care. Find out how this has helped one woman in West Sussex.

 

Lucy is a 58 year old lady with mild learning disabilities who lives in a supported living home. She was referred to SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Community Development Officer Stephen Kill by her care manager. Lucy attends an eye clinic for treatment for glaucoma, has cataracts and is also diabetic. The care manager felt that staff needed to know more about Lucy’s eye conditions, her level of vision and what support she required with everyday vision-related tasks.

 

Lucy herself is aware of her visual impairment and is registered blind. She has a lively personality, loves to chat and go out shopping, to discos and to karaoke sessions. When Stephen Kill started to talk to her about her eye problems, Lucy’s main complaint was that her eye drops stung. She says, “I used to create. If they put a lot of drops in, I’d say ‘aargh!'” Kill says, “Like the staff, Lucy knew bits and pieces about her eye conditions, but no-one had a full picture. It is a common situation as people may be accompanied to appointments by different support workers at different times”.

 

It was at this point that Stephen Kill went with Lucy to one of her hospital eye clinic appointments. At the appointment, the doctor explained about Lucy’s eye conditions. Lucy now says, “I know I have glaucoma and cataracts”. Glaucoma is a generally painless condition where raised pressure in the eye can cause loss of peripheral vision. The person may be able to see well straight ahead. Kill explains, “Many people with glaucoma don’t know why they keep on returning to see an eye specialist, and are unsure what their eye drops are for. My role is to help them understand what their condition is and what the treatment does, and this is how I helped Lucy.” Lucy is now clear about using her eye drops, and says, “It is one drop four times a day in both eyes”. This is particularly important as, without the drops, Lucy could lose more sight.

 

Because they had discussed it in advance, Stephen reminded Lucy to tell the doctor that her eye drops stung. The doctor was able to change them to a type which would not sting, which has made Lucy much happier to take them. She can now explain about looking after her eyes, “Every six months I see the doctor at the eye clinic. He is fine. He looks in my eyes and he says they are fine”. Repeat appointments allow the doctor to ensure Lucy’s drops are still controlling her glaucoma and protecting her remaining vision.

 

Stephen Kill’s role involves a bit of detective work. He explains, “I may need to go through someone’s notes, accompany them to the eye clinic once or twice, and carry out a functional visual assessment. I will then pull all the information together, talk it through with the person, and write it up for the care staff in accessible language.” Kill’s notes for staff will include details of where a person manages well and where they need more support. In Lucy’s case, because her peripheral vision is poor, she needed more support crossing the road. Staff could encourage her to turn her head to look both ways before crossing. The notes also listed what needed to be done to keep Lucy’s eyes healthy. In her case this meant using her eye drops on a daily basis and attending the eye clinic every six months. Finally, Kill advised staff about how to give Lucy information and make the most of her vision. In her home you can see attractive large print charts listing which carers are supporting her each day, healthy foods for her to eat and family birthdays to remember.

 

Stephen Kill worked with Lucy for around 10 months. He says, “How long I work with someone will depend on individual need and when their next eye appointment is due. Carers are usually helpful but sometimes they aren’t and I may wait a long time to receive information I have requested, which is frustrating. For some people I will also go to their next appointment with the optometrist so we are clear about whether they need glasses and when to use them. Lucy uses glasses for reading. I will also find out about the person’s hearing needs if appropriate”.

 

As well as benefiting from the service, Lucy has contributed to the eye 2 eye project in West Sussex on a number of occasions since her assessment. With her outgoing personality, she has been able to give a talk to fellow tenants of the supported living service about eye care during a day of workshops and activities. She describes her experience, “It was alright. I wasn’t nervous. I talked about how it is important to have your eyes checked every two years”. She has also spoken to inspectors from CSCI (the Commission for Social Care Inspectorate, now replaced by the Care Quality Commission) about her experiences and taken part in a presentation to the local learning disabilities partnership board. Stephen Kill says, “We practiced Lucy’s part in her home, then went over to where the meeting would take place the week before. This preparation really helped Lucy to feel comfortable on the day of the presentation. He adds, “Lucy has really given back to the project by supporting me when I give talks and talking about her own experience”.

 

 

BOX COPY

What is a functional visual assessment?

 

  • A rehabilitation worker will look at how someone’s vision is used for close-up activities, in the distance and in the periphery. The worker will use picture cards (known as Kay Pictures) or a Sheridan Gardiner letters test to get an objective idea of a person’s vision. This can also help to see how someone will get on if they have an eye test at the opticians.
  • The rehabilitation worker will watch the person and how they interact doing everyday activities at home. The worker may use a selection of cups and bowls with coloured sweets such as Smarties to see which colours and contrasts the person can see most easily. A finger puppet on a stick makes testing someone’s peripheral vision fun, and can also be used to see if the person can follow an object.
  • Evidence from staff can contribute to an overall picture of what a person sees. Examples such as missing food on a plate, or being surprised when someone approaches them can help the rehabilitation worker understand what the person can and cannot see.
  • All this information will help the rehab worker make practical suggestions to help the person make the most of their potential and vision.

END OF BOX

 

BOX COPY

What is a rehabilitation worker?

Rehabilitation workers work with people with visual impairments to help them build their independence. They are usually funded by local authorities, but the job can also be contracted out to a local voluntary association for people with a visual impairment. Stephen Kill studied for a Diploma in Rehabilitation Studies before taking his first job with the Surrey Association for Visual Impairment. He says, “My work involved carrying out assessments, delivering orientation and mobility programmes, helping with independent living skills and providing low vision training to visually impaired adults and children”. Kill then moved on to work for charity SeeAbility, to work with people with a visual impairment and additional disabilities in residential, day service and supported living settings. His role there involved liaising with staff teams to ensure that enabling rehabilitation programmes were delivered to service users. His current role at SeeAbility as an eye 2 eye Development Officer involves supporting people with learning disabilities to access regular and effective eye care and vision services. Kill adds, “I also work raising awareness and providing support and training to individuals, carers and health and social care professionals”.

END OF BOX

 

Find out more

If you work with adults with learning disabilities, check out www.lookupinfo.org for helpful resources for people with learning disabilities, their carers and families. Use the site to help prepare someone for an eye appointment or to learn more about different eye conditions.

www.seeability.org – SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Campaign aims to transform eye care and vision for people with learning disabilities in the UK by providing information, advice and support for people with learning disabilities, their families and carers, eye care professionals and health and social services staff.

 

– ENDS –

 

Issued by SeeAbility, for further information please contact:

Monica Cornforth on 020 8997 1261 or 07811 147 192

NOTES TO EDITORS

  • SeeAbility is the operating name for The Royal School for the Blind, a national charity which has for over 200 years provided support for people who are blind or partially sighted and have additional disabilities.
  • SeeAbility offers a wide range of quality residential and community services for people with a visual impairment and additional disabilities. Our aim is to provide each individual with the support they need to develop essential life skills for greater independence and fulfilling life.
  • SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Campaign, a community-based initiative, is improving eye care and vision for people with a learning disability through access to information, specially-adapted sight tests and low-vision support.
  • SeeAbility currently operates a range of services in London, Sheffield, Birmingham, Bristol, East Sussex, Hampshire, Devon, Somerset, Surrey and West Sussex.
  • SeeAbility’s Head Office is based in Epsom, Surrey and for further information call 01372 755000 or go to www.seeability.org

 

 

Opticians get Wise About Eyes

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Date: 19 June 2009

Opticians get Wise About Eyes

 

If you support someone with a learning disability, have you thought about taking them for an eye test recently? There are well over a million people with some level of learning disability in the UK.[i],[ii] People with learning disabilities are more likely to have eye problems, yet often have difficulty getting good quality eye care. Leading eyecare charity SeeAbility (formerly The Royal School for the Blind) is working with optometrists to put this right.

 

Carers of people with learning disabilities may not realise that a person is not able to see, when the person themselves can’t communicate the problem. And for the person themselves, it may make little sense if they are, “going to a shop between the bank and butchers, being taken into a dark room with a stranger, being asked lots of funny questions and having lights shone into their eyes'”

 

A new education pack for optometrists will make it easier for people with learning disabilities to get the eye care that they need. The pack has been developed by Healthcall Optical Services in co-operation with SeeAbility and education and training provider Replay Learning. SeeAbility works to transform eye care and vision for people with learning disabilities through its eye 2 eye campaign which provides information, advice and support for people with learning disabilities, their carers, health and social services staff and eye care professionals. Paula Spinks-Chamberlain, SeeAbility’s Director of Information and Advisory Services says, “We have been working with Healthcall Optical Services across the UK for a number of years. Healthcall originally produced this pack for their own optometrists and approached us about sharing the resource with others across the UK.”

 

Dawn Roberts, Clinical Director at Healthcall Optical Services has been a driving force behind the new pack. She says, “When a person with learning disabilities is put at a disadvantage simply because they need spectacles but have never had the opportunity to have a sight test, action is required and this booklet is our attempt to address this situation.” Family carer Audrey Neate knows from her own experience that appropriate eye care can make a big difference to people with learning disabilities. She says, “When my son first went for an eye test he didn’t know his letters, so the standard test chart was pretty meaningless for him. In the early days he may as well not have gone for a test. Now though, an accurate measure of his visual problem means that he has been accepted into the Royal National College for the Blind.”

 

People have learning disabilities due to damage to the brain before, during, or after birth, or from genetic or chromosomal factors.”[iii] This damage can also cause eyesight problems. SeeAbility estimates that in the UK today 1 in 3 people with a learning disability have a sight problem. And, due to the very nature of their disabilities, this group has problems in getting access to eye care. Optometrist and co-author of the pack, Maggie Woodhouse, says, “The pack highlights the importance of eye examinations for people with learning disabilities, because they are at much higher risk of eye disorders.”

 

The pack contains practical advice for optometrists as well as background information about learning disabilities. Practitioners can find out about using a “‘person first’ approach when dealing with or discussing patients – they are ‘a person with a learning disability’ not ‘a learning disabled person'”. The pack looks at how to address issues that people may have about attending an optical practice, such as anxiety about an unfamiliar location. Combined with a lack of understanding of what is going on, this anxiety can lead to a person with learning disabilities performing less well than they would do if relaxed. There are tips on how to get someone used to the ideas in an eye test on the Look Up website, www.lookupinfo.org

 

The pack is going to be of use beyond the optical profession. National Director for Learning Disabilities Anne Williams says, “People with Learning Disabilities have a right to the full range of health services including excellent eye care. Seeability has championed their needs and this pack continues with that good work”. Hilary Young is Improvement & Development Manager, Learning Disabilities Service in the London Borough of Hackney. Having looked at the pack, she comments, “I’m very impressed. It is one of the most helpful and informative things I’ve read in a long time. In my personal experience, it was only when I moved to sensory services that I realized the prevalence of sight problems and the impact they could have on the individual. Although this pack is directed at optometrists, it could be a resource for other professionals. Social care professionals will find it helpful to look from the other side. People need to know how to support someone going for an eye test.”

 

The pack is also full of tips on communicating with people with learning disabilities. It highlights a useful tool developed by SeeAbility, the Pre Examination Questionnaire. Paula Spinks-Chamberlain explains, “We designed these forms because people with learning disabilities and those who supported them asked us to do so. The Pre Examination Form entitled ‘Telling the Optometrist About Me’ is designed to be completed before the sight test. The process enables people to prepare well for the test, plus it helps optometrists to know all of the important things about the person and how they may respond to certain situations. The ‘Feedback from the Optometrist about my eye test’ form helps to share important details about the sight test with those who need to know. Without this form, this information can fail to reach all carers. Accurate and accessible information about how the person will see best, why glasses have been prescribed and when they will help is crucial.”

 

The pack goes on to explain about communicating during the examination and using pictures and sign language. It suggests that opticians, “Throw routine out of the window, and work in the order that is most appropriate for the person” in order to ensure that the most vital tests are completed first if the person’s attention wanes.

 

Packed with handy and practical tips, the pack is being sent out to 8,000 optometrists across the UK to ensure that they, and their staff, are fully prepared when a person with learning disabilities needs an examination. Margaret Woodhouse says, “My hope is that the pack will encourage more optometrists to build up expertise in providing eye care to people with learning disabilities and help widen access.”

 

Paula Spinks-Chamberlain sums up, “Many people with a learning disability will not know they have a sight problem and may not be able to communicate this to others. Unidentified sight problems can seriously affect someone’s quality of life, lead to increased dependency and preventable blindness. SeeAbility aspires to shape better and more accessible eye care and vision services for people with learning disabilities across the UK. The eye 2 eye Campaign is all about making genuine change happen for people with learning disabilities and this resource will be of great value to this process.”

 

Look Up www.lookupinfo.org an education resource on eye care and vision for people with learning disabilities. Look Up provides information and advice to eye care and vision professionals on the needs of people who have a learning disability – and information and advice on the importance of eye care and vision to those who support people who have a learning disability. A pre examination form entitled ‘Telling the Optometrist About Me’ and a post examination form entitled ‘Feedback from the Optometrist about my Eye Test’ can be downloaded from www.lookupinfo.org.

 

– ENDS –

Issued by SeeAbility. For further information please contact:

Monica Cornforth on 020 8997 1261 or 07811 147 192

NOTES TO EDITORS

  • SeeAbility is the operating name for The Royal School for the Blind, a national charity which has for over 200 years provided support for people who are blind or partially sighted and have additional disabilities.
  • SeeAbility currently provides a range of services in; Birmingham, Bristol, Devon, East Sussex, Hampshire, Humberside, London, Sheffield, Somerset, Surrey and West Sussex.
  • SeeAbility offers a wide range of specialised residential, community and rehabilitation services for people with a visual impairment and additional disabilities. Our aim is to provide each individual with the support they need to develop essential life skills for greater independence and a fulfilling life.
  • SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Campaign, a community-based initiative, is improving eye care and vision for people with a learning disability.
  • Look-Up www.lookupinfo.org provides information and advice on eye care and vision for people with learning disabilities.
  • SeeAbility’s Central Office is based in Epsom, Surrey. For further information call 01372 755000 or visit www.seeability.org


[i] Valuing People A New Strategy for Learning Disability for the 21st Century http://www.archive.official-documents.co.uk/document/cm50/5086/5086.pdf accessed 08/6/2009

[ii] The same as you? A review of services for people with learning disabilities

http://www.scotland.gov.uk/ldsr/docs/tsay-00.asp accessed 8/6/2009

Bamford Review of Mental Health and Learning Disability in Northern Ireland, http://www.rmhldni.gov.uk/index/published-reports/learning-disability-report.htm

[iii] Mencap Definition

 

SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye campaign makes the semi-final of the National Lottery Awards

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

Date: 19 June 2009

SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye campaign makes the semi-final of the National Lottery Awards

People with learning disabilities have been getting better eye care for the last 3 years, thanks to SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Campaign. Your vote for the project in the National Lottery Awards could help take SeeAbility through to the final.

There are around 1.5 million people in the UK with a learning disability, and 1 in 3 have a sight problem. Many of these people do not know they have a problem and may not be able to tell anyone. The innovative eye 2 eye Campaign created and run by SeeAbility, formerly, the Royal School for the Blind, works to improve the eye health and vision of people with learning disabilities across the UK.

 

Optometrist Ron Paxton has been involved in the project from the start. He says, “Too often, because something is ‘too hard’ the problem gets left behind; ever hopeful that another good soul will answer the call for help. SeeAbility has taken on this difficult problem and has started to achieve real results for people with learning disabilities.”

 

Lottery funding is vital in enabling the eye 2 eye Campaign to reach people. . eye 2 eye Development Officer Stephen Kill is funded through a Lottery grant to work directly with people with learning disabilities. He says, “There is a lot of preparation needed for someone with learning disabilities to receive an effective eye test. They need to understand what’s going to happen and feel comfortable.”

 

Family carer Audrey Neate says, “My son has been accepted into the Royal National College for the Blind. This would not have happened without an accurate measure of his visual problems. SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye work is raising awareness in a big way amongst people who care for people with learning disabilities. Carers are now more able to spot if a person might have a visual problem and take action to help the person make the most of their sight.”

 

David Scott-Ralphs, Chief Executive of SeeAbility says, “We’re delighted to have reached the final of The National Lottery Awards. Lottery funding has helped SeeAbility to extend our eye 2 eye work, enabling us to improve eyecare for more people who have learning disabilities. We’re really hoping the public get behind us and vote.”

Stephen also raises awareness of the importance of regular eye tests to prevent people with learning disabilities from losing their sight unnecessarily. Ron, 58, already had poor vision in one eye when it was noticed he was having trouble with the other one. Stephen supported him through treatment to have a cataract removed. Ron is now confident about getting around and is enjoying his life.

 

Stephen says “I love my job – it is immensely rewarding to help people with learning disabilities make the most of their sight.”

 

SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye project is competing in the Best Health Project category. Voting takes place between the 22nd June and the 10th July. To register your vote for the project go to www.lotterygoodcauses.org.uk/awards, phone 0844 686 7110 or go direct to the SeeAbility website www.seeability.org. If the project gets to the final it will have the opportunity to be on the Saturday night National Lottery Show and tell the nation about the importance of this work.

 

– ENDS –

Issued by SeeAbility, for further information please contact:

Monica Cornforth on 020 8997 1261 or 07811 147 192

Case studies are available.

NOTES TO EDITORS

  • SeeAbility is the operating name for The Royal School for the Blind, a national charity which has for over 200 years provided support for people who are blind or partially sighted and have additional disabilities.
  • SeeAbility currently provides a range of services in; Birmingham, Bristol, Devon, East Sussex, Hampshire, Humberside, London, Sheffield, Somerset, Surrey and West Sussex.
  • SeeAbility offers a wide range of specialised residential, community and rehabilitation services for people with a visual impairment and additional disabilities. Our aim is to provide each individual with the support they need to develop essential life skills for greater independence and a fulfilling life.
  • SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Campaign, a community-based initiative, is improving eye care and vision for people with a learning disability.
  • Look-Up www.lookupinfo.org provides information and advice on eye care and vision for people with learning disabilities.
  • SeeAbility’s Central Office is based in Epsom, Surrey. For further information call 01372 755000 or visit www.seeability.org

 

 

Young people with learning disabilities missing out on eye care

Young people with learning disabilities missing out on eye care

 

Across the UK, thousands of young adults with profound learning disabilities may be missing out, just because no-one has thought to test their eyes. Read on to find out how one SeeAbility community development officer in Sheffield is trying to turn this situation around.

 

Pauline Hargreaves is a learning disability nurse who works as a Community Development Officer as part of the national eye2eye Campaign run by SeeAbility. She says, “When I started working on the Campaign I saw lots of people with learning disabilities who had been referred to me with previously unidentified eye problems. Many of the people I have supported to have their eyes tested and subsequently had problems identified have been in their fifties and beyond. This concerned me as a number of people had clearly spent many years being unable to see well due to a lack of eye care. Therefore I started to look for a way to change the future, to help people with learning disabilities to access eye care at a younger age.”

 

Pauline decided to get in touch with the local secondary school for children with profound learning disabilities, Talbot Specialist School in Sheffield. She says, “I knew that if I could initiate eye care before the children left school, they would get into the eye care system and be sent reminders to have regular care throughout adulthood.”

 

There are around 65,000 children and young people with severe and profound learning disabilities in England. [i] Better health for people with learning disabilities is a key priority in the Government’s latest strategy for people with learning disabilities, Valuing People Now. It says that, “There is clear evidence that most people with learning disabilities have poorer health than the rest of the population and are more likely to die at a younger age. Their access to the NHS is often poor.” The pilot Pauline was proposing at Talbot Specialist School would look at bringing eye care to the students, improving their chances of getting serious eye problems detected.

 

Eye tests for people with learning disabilities are vital as they have a higher incidence of eye problems than the general population, and those with profound learning disabilities like the students at Talbot Specialist School are most at risk. In one study in the Netherlands 38.9% of young adults with profound learning disabilities were found to be blind. People with learning disabilities are more likely to need spectacles than the general population, and more likely to have a high prescription too.

 

BOX COPY
People who are blind or who have severe sight problems are likely to have some useful vision, and action can be taken to help them make the most of their remaining vision:

  • Moving about is easier in an environment with clearly marked edges.
  • If someone’s vision is better on one side than the other, then may prefer to be approached from that side.
  • Making things bigger makes things easier to see, however little vision you have.
  • Improving lighting on the task in hand will help too.

END OF BOX

 

Talbot is a Specialist School for more than 100 young people with a range of complex learning needs including autism, profound and multiple learning disabilities. Carolyn Sutcliffe is the Deputy Head. She says, “Pauline came to school to talk to use about [eye care for the students] and I was very impressed. One of the parents also told us how her son, who has learning disabilities, was also visually impaired. The parent said that it was fantastic that it had been picked up.”

 

Pauline liaised with the teachers and school nurse, and spoke to Healthcall Optical Services which offers mobile eye examinations, also known as domiciliary eye care. She says, “I was able to explain that many of the students would not be able to use the conventional letter charts, and some would not be able to match pictures. They seemed to take this all in their stride.” Dawn Roberts of Healthcall Optical Services says, “It is not the first time we have worked with SeeAbility in the Sheffield area.”

 

Pauline recruited the students from those who were leaving the school at the end of the school year. She says, “All the school leavers have to have a medical. We went through the forms to identify any student who had not had regular eye care. Some had never had their eyes checked, while others had had congenital eye problems detected at birth, but with no recent follow up.”

 

The tests took place over two days. Pauline says, “It did take some organisation. For those students who were able to, we used the medical room. For others it was easier to test them in their classrooms. With some students, where we were able to, we used SeeAbility’s ‘Telling the optometrist about me’ forms to find their medical and eye health history out before the test. We managed to talk about the eye test to some of the students too, to help prepare them.” She continues, “The optometrist turned up with a good range of tests on the day which would suit students of different abilities.” Dawn Roberts of Healthcall Optical Services explains how an optometrist can get good results, even if a student could not match or name pictures, “We’re able to get a good estimate of a prescription using one of two techniques. Retinoscopy involves shining a light onto the person’s eye and inserting lenses until the reflection of the light does not move. It is very accurate, and a technique that all optometrists can use in anyone’s sight test. If the person can comply, the optometrist can use an autorefractor which shines a picture onto the back of the eye, measures the distance to the back of the eye and calculates the prescription needed. The optometrist has experience of knowing what sort of prescription will make a difference to the person. We can make a really good assessment of what their vision would be and their carers can be informed.”

 

BOX COPY

Eye test essentials

Retinoscopy/autorefractor – to estimate the person’s prescription

Letter charts or picture matching – to allow the optometrist to refine the prescription

Ophthalmoscopy – shining a light into the eye to check eye health

The optometrist will use other tests depending on the person’s needs and abilities.

END OF BOX

 

Pauline says, “The optometrist was great. Where he could see there was a potential problem he stuck with it to get to the bottom of the issue. With some students he used eye drops to get a better view of the back of their eyes or to allow him to estimate a prescription more accurately. Not every student wanted their eyes tested: some wouldn’t let him get very near with his torch, but we managed.” The staff at Talbot School were also impressed. Carolyn Sutcliffe said, “We hadn’t thought we could offer this sort of screening in school. It was not disruptive at all.”

 

Sutcliffe explains one plus point of testing in-school which contributed to the pilot’s success, “The parents didn’t have to take [their children] to a strange environment.” Katrina, whose sons had their eyes examined, agrees, “I thought Jonathon, my eldest, could see everything. When he had his eye test he was found to be long sighted. I had problems with my other son as he didn’t want to wear his glasses, and the test showed he no longer needed them. The eye tests were great and I wish they could have been started when the boys were younger. Having the test in school is wonderful. The children need continuity and routine. Taking them into a high street opticians would be difficult as it would be a strange and new environment. The person who came to the school was marvellous and I was surprised that Jonathon behaved so well.”

 

CASE STUDIES:

 

Robert was registered partially sighted at birth, but had not had eye examinations since then. The optometrist checked his good eye, which was found to be extremely short sighted with a cataract. He felt that Robert would benefit from specs to address the shortsightedness, regardless of his other problems. Pauline says, “It may take Robert some time to get used to his spectacles. I’ll work with his teachers on introducing them gradually, but we hope that they will help him make the most of the vision he does have.”

 

Dawn has Downs Syndrome and profound multiple learning disabilities. She was not able to co-operate with the eye examination, but the optometrist could use an instrument to estimate that she was moderately short sighted and would not be able to see far at all. With a new pair of glasses Dawn’s vision should improve significantly.

 

Frank, a teenager with unmanaged epilepsy, had been in intensive care recently, so it was not a great day for the eye test. He didn’t want to open his eyes which meant that the optometrist could do very little. However another test was arranged for him at his home. Pauline says, “We went into the kitchen and did the test there with his mother present. She was so pleased to have his eyes checked, and felt it was a relief.”

 

Commenting on the results, Sutcliffe says, “I was surprised in one way, but learning disabilities can mask so many things. I now realise lots of people have eye problems that are not detected. I was impressed with how it was done too. The outcomes demonstrate the need for [eye testing for students with learning disabilities]. It has been a vital piece of work”. Pauline Hargreaves says, “I think many of the teachers assumed that the children had had an eye test somewhere in their journey through school. A support teacher here does some screening at age five, but of course that is not a full eye test. The teachers were amazed how easy it was to have the eye tests, and astounded that so many of the students could benefit from an eye examination.” Hargreaves adds, “Had I not started this project, these children would have gone on from school into adult life without being able to make the most of their vision. I fed back test results to the relevant teachers who were surprised that they had not spotted any problems. Even the school nurses had not picked up on signs of sight problems. One of the young women we tested just looks down at her chest all the time, which can be a sign that there is a vision problem. With others, lack of concentration could be an indication that it is worth getting an eye check. ”

 

A key issue for the NHS in Valuing People Now is to ensure high-quality specialist health services where these are needed. Pauline Hargreaves hopes that the pilot at Talbot Specialist School will show the need for better eyecare for people with learning disabilities, and encourage other specialist schools to arrange in-school eye care. She says, “How can children and young adults be expected to learn and develop when we are writing off one of their main senses? I’d like to see eye tests for children in special schools to be required by law. These young adults will be taking a care plan with them when they leave school, and now their visual needs will be on that plan. They will now get services that take into account how well they can see too.” Deputy Head Carolyn Sutcliffe agrees, “Health and social care need to work together to meet the needs of people with learning disabilities. Now these difficulties have been picked up the students can get appropriate treatments to improve their quality of life. This will help with their independence and allow them to continue learning more effectively throughout their adult life.”

 

Dawn Roberts highlights the need for better training for eye care professionals in working with people with learning disabilities, “Lots of optometrists have little experience with working with people with learning disabilities but we have been working with SeeAbility on a training package which will go out to all UK optometrists. There are a whole host of people with learning disabilities who are not getting access to eye care at the moment, and we’d like to change this. I know of one man who could not go to the toilet independently until it was discovered that he was extremely short sighted. With new spectacles he could take himself and no longer needed to wear pads.”

 

If you are keen to set up in-school eye tests in your area, Roberts advises that you approach the PCT first, “The regulations currently only allow for NHS sight tests to be provided at home, in an approved day care centre or an optician’s practice. Explain the benefits of testing in school to the PCT and they may be able to fund it as a Local Enhanced Service. Alternatively the service may need to be put out to private tender.”

 

If you know someone with learning disabilities who has not had an eye examination, SeeAbility Project Lead for Yorkshire and the Humber Laura Christie has some advice, “Nobody is too disabled to have their eyes tested. A lot of the students in this pilot had very complex needs and everybody managed to participate in some way. Visit the LookUp website to find a local optometrist who has registered to examine people with learning disabilities, and check out the information on the website or give SeeAbility a call about how to help someone prepare for an eye test.”

 

For More Information

www.lookupinfo.org – ‘Telling the optometrist about me’ and “Feedback from the optometrist about my eye test” forms are available to download along with further information on eye care and preparing someone for an eye test. You can also call 01372 755000 or email info@lookupinfo.org

 

www.seeability.org

 

www.healthcalloptical.co.uk

 

 

Talbot Specialist School Young Adults Eye Tests 2009 Outcomes

 

No problems 6 Students

Cataracts 3 students

Optic nerve damage and changes in the retina 2 Students

Nystagmus 2 Students

Glasses 4 Students

 


[i] Valuing People, Department of Health (2001)