The Royal College of Ophthalmologists has emphasised the importance of prioritising eye health in a manifesto launched ahead of the June general election.
The document urges the next Government to invest in sustainable eye healthcare.
“Making vision and eye health a national priority will reduce the burden that sight loss has on the health and social care system,” the manifesto emphasises.
The document refers to recent research by the Royal College of Ophthalmologists that found 22 patients were losing their vision each month as a result of treatment delays.
It calls more ophthalmologists to be trained to meet a workforce shortage. The document also urges the future government to upskill and expand multidisciplinary eye care teams.
The Royal College of Ophthalmologists notes that demand for hospital eye outpatient services has increased by 40% over the past decade, while levels of chronic eye disease are expected to continue to rise with the ageing population.
The manifesto calls for the government to fund and support improvements to make eye services sustainable.
“Further investment in resources is required to deliver the innovative new models of care that ophthalmologists have developed to meet the growing clinical need,” the manifesto highlights.