PES seeks expressions of interest for Community Eye Care Services

Primary Eyecare Services is relaunching the service in the Vale of York and the North Yorkshire CCG areas, with practices asked to submit an expression of interest by 31 October

optical equipment
Pexels/Ksenia Chernaya

Community Eye Care Services (CECS) are being relaunched in the Vale of York and North Yorkshire, with practices interested in participating in the service encouraged to submit an expression of interest by the end of October.

Working with the Vale of York and the North Yorkshire clinical commissioning groups (CCGs), Primary Eyecare Services (PES) is relaunching the CECS, with services due to go live in late 2021 or early 2022.

The service will provide assessment and treatment for a range of minor eye conditions, as well as providing a glaucoma repeat measures service.

Patients in areas covered by the CCG will be able to access the CECS, either by self-presenting at the service, or following a signposting or referral from healthcare professionals such as GPs, non-participating practices, or the hospital eye service.

PES is seeking practices interested in delivering the services, and has asked those who wish to take part to complete an expression of interest no later than 31 October.

Speaking to OT, PES local lead, Naomi Smith, explained that there is currently a service provision, but this is split into three different areas. She suggested the new programme “is providing an equal level of service for everybody across the whole of the two CCG areas.”

“It will also hopefully improve access, because we will be able to extend the service into more rural locations,” Smith shared, adding that cross-border practices can participate, recognising “patients don’t always go to a practice where they live.”

Lisa Gibson, PES clinical governance and performance lead, commented: “PES are really excited to be involved in this new service that shows equal care across this joined CCG area.”

The service has seen expressions of interest across the two CCG areas from independent practices and multiples, but is keen to hear from more practices considering taking part.

Gibson emphasised: “Primary Eyecare Services open their services up to all optical practices that want to participate and that fulfil the requirements.”

The company hopes the CECS will provide practitioners a “more streamlined service” along with a chance to use their clinical skills.

“It will hopefully provide a lot more inter-practice working as well,” Smith said. “What we found in the Durham area, where we have a similar service already, is that practices get to know each other and work well together. We do find a service-spirit builds up.”

The service will run through the Opera IT platform, with processes for patient episodes, patient tracking, and “robust” governance.

Practices who have expressed an interest are already being onboarded to the IT system.

The deadline for expressions of interest is 31 October. More details on the service can be found on the PES website, or by contacting [email protected].