New diabetic screening service could see 70,000 Londoners benefit

Centralised service for diabetic screening has been established in south west London

Optometrist consults patient

More than 70,000 people in London are expected to benefit from a new centralised diabetic service that has been designed to make it easier to book and attend vital eye screening appointments.

As one of five companies selected by NHS England to establish standardised screening across London, Medical Imaging UK is providing the service in Wandsworth, Richmond, Kingston, Croydon, Sutton and Merton. A mobile service will also be introduced.

The new south west London model means that patients diagnosed with diabetes will be able to use a central appointment booking service that is open longer hours, six days a week, rather than having to book locally during standard office hours.

Patients are given specific time slots, allowing clinicians to monitor a person’s overall condition to ensure those needing closer supervision are on the right care pathway.

Everyone over the age of 12 who has been diagnosed with diabetes is invited for a screening annually.

Managing director of Medical Imaging UK Ltd, an EMIS Group company, Kevin McDonnell, said: "Extended hours telephone booking sounds like a small improvement, but some patients find it difficult to book an appointment during typical office hours. That means some patients fail to book for this important test which is vital for their eye health. That’s a scenario we certainly hope to prevent."

Mr McDonnell added: "Patients are often invited to open screening clinics without a specific appointment time which makes tracking attendance more difficult. All our patients receive their own dedicated appointment slot which means we can ensure patients requiring screening, particularly those identified as being most at risk, are definitely attending and taking the right steps along their care path."