Multi-disciplinary approach supported
Closer ties between optometrists and ophthalmologists called for in report addressing capacity pressures
A closer working relationship between ophthalmologists and optometrists may help to ease the burden on hospital eye services.A report commissioned by The Royal College of Ophthalmologists, The Way Forward, provides an overview of the way that ophthalmology departments in the UK are working to meet growing demand.
A constant increase in acute eye care attendances was also highlighted in the report.
It was important that there was a direct line of communication with the hospital eye service if the patient or optometrist needed to raise problems, the document emphasised.
AMD and diabetic retinopathy
The Way Forward explained that advances in imaging technology had changed the way the age-related macular degeneration (AMD) services were provided.
Two thirds of departments interviewed had non-ophthalmologists making clinical decisions in their AMD pathways, with the majority of those decisions made by hospital optometrists, but also by nurses and orthoptists.