7 May 2012 Return to news listings
Paul Burstow MP has backed a campaign to improve eye health services for people with learning disabilities.
Liberal Democrat Health Minister Paul Burstow MP visited the Morden Eye Centre on Friday (4th May) with David Scott-Ralphs, Chief Executive of SeeAbility, to observe teenager Roshni Kothari receiving an enhanced sight test for those with learning difficulties. This was Roshni’s first sight test in the community, having previously been treated at Sutton Eye Hospital.
People with learning disabilities may not know they have a sight problem and changes in behaviour may be the only way to communicate this. Often this behaviour is misinterpreted by families and supporters.
SeeAbility’s eye 2 eye Campaign, launched in 2005, has proposed a number of ways to improve eye health services for people with learning disabilities. In particular the campaign has highlighted the importance of the Direct Enhanced Scheme for annual health checks.
Recent research commissioned by SeeAbility and Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) highlighted:
There are one million adults with a learning disability in the UK.
People with learning disabilities are ten times more likely to have serious sight problems than other people. People with severe or profound learning disabilities are most likely to have sight problems.
Six in ten people with learning disabilities need glasses and often need support to get used to them.
There will be a 10% increase in people with learning disabilities and sight loss over the next 20 years.
SeeAbility has campaigned for people with learning disabilities emphasising that everyone with a learning disability should have a sight test at least every two years, or more frequently if advised by an optometrist.
Mr Burstow said; “Seeing the difference personalised tests in the community make to people like Roshni reminds us of the people behind the statistics: there are one million people in the UK with a learning disability, and 60% of those need glasses – and the support to get used to them. These people and their carers deserve our help.”
David Scott-Ralphs of SeeAbility said: “This was a great opportunity to show the Minister an enhanced eye test in practice. People with learning disabilities are ten times more likely to have sight problems than other people in the population and yet are the least likely to get the right help and support with their eye care.Through SeeAbility's eye 2 eye Campaign we will continue to champion this issue for people with learning disabilities.”
Tue, 21 May 2013 11:14:27 +0000
Tue, 21 May 2013 08:26:33 +0000
Tue, 21 May 2013 08:26:28 +0000
Tue, 21 May 2013 08:26:23 +0000
Wed, 15 May 2013 11:00:46 +0000
Tue, 14 May 2013 07:52:59 +0000