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RCOphth welcomes London Assembly investigation into eye health in London

5 July 2017

The London Assembly Health Committee is conducting an enquiry into eye health and preventing sight loss in London.

The Mayor has a duty to produce a strategy to promote the reduction of health inequalities among Londoners. Access to appropriate eye care in London is variable and this investigation aims to examine how to reduce these inequalities.

The Health Committee held a panel discussion at their meeting on Tuesday 27 June with representatives from the eye health and care sector.

The participants discussed the impacts of poor eye health and sight loss, barriers to equal access of care, and what role the Mayor could play in enabling a strategic approach to addressing these inequalities in London.

The panel set out the physical, emotional and social impacts of poor vision on Londoners and the role of missed eye care appointments in avoidable sight loss. Panel member Miss Parul Desai, Consultant in Ophthalmology and Public HealthMoorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, argued that the consequences of not receiving care mean that capacity issues are now a public health problem.

The RCOphth supports this view and urges the Committee/Mayor to recognise the significance of the capacity challenge in London eye services and to support the development of new ways of working to overcome it.