Question to the Department of Health and Social Care:
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to improve eye health services.
Prevention, early detection and access to timely treatment are all key to improving eye health. The Government has well-established programmes on reducing smoking and obesity, both long terms risk factors for vision loss.
Free National Health Service sight tests, a vital eye health check, are available to all children, those aged 60 and over, individuals on low incomes or at increased risk of certain eye diseases. Diabetic retinopathy is a common complication of diabetes which can lead to sight loss. The diabetic retinopathy screening programme continues to offer screening to those eligible.
NHS England and NHS Improvement’s national outpatient transformation programme is also looking to improve secondary care ophthalmology outpatient services, to improve patient experience, access to care and outcomes.