Certification and registration: what the optometrist needs to know

This review examines the vital role that optometrists have in identifying people with serious visual impairment and facilitating support through referral for certification and registration.

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For people with sight loss, certification as sight impaired or severely sight impaired is a route to accessing support rather than the end of the road in terms of treatment options. Certification is undertaken by an ophthalmologist within a clinical setting. This leads to the offer of registration with the local authority which enables people to derive real benefit from services and support. Data from rates of certification and numbers registered can be used for local area service planning and commissioning. Certification rates per 100 000 population for age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy are the indicators for preventable sight loss used by the Public Health Outcomes Framework for England.

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