Top doctor praises eye care commissioning project

  • 8 Nov 2011

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Sir Muir Gray, the NHS Chief Knowledge Officer, has praised the College of Optometrists and Royal College of Ophthalmologists for hosting “the best meeting on eye disease and low vision ever”. Sir Muir, a keen advocate of new technology, made the announcement on Twitter after attending a meeting of a joint College group that is helping commissioners design eye care services.  

Sir Muir is one of country’s top doctors and leads the Department of Health’s Right Care programme which targets commissioners to get the best value care for their patients.  The College of Optometrists and Royal College of Ophthalmologists have brought together GP commissioning experts from the Royal College of General Practitioners and the National Association of Primary Care to work with clinicians and patient groups to take the Right Care agenda forward in eye care.

The project, which has also caught the attention of Professor Sir Bruce Keogh, the NHS Medical Director, is helping commissioners understand how to use resources across primary and secondary care to design health services for each of the major eye conditions, including glaucoma, urgent eye care, low vision and children’s eye services.  

Dr David Paynton, a National Clinical Champion for the Royal College of General Practitioners’ Commissioning Unit, is supporting the project.  He summarised the challenge facing eye care commissioners, “Clinically-led commissioners are looking for innovative ways to get the best value care for their patients.  This project is an innovative way of looking across primary and secondary care to get the best eye care outcomes for patients”.

Dr Cindy Tromans, President of the College of Optometrists who is co-chairing the project, welcomed Sir Muir’s comments: “Commissioners, GPs and ophthalmologists recognise the vital role optometrists play in working with them to design and deliver accessible, high quality, good value eye care services for patients. It is reassuring to know that senior clinicians within the NHS are supportive of our work”.  

Mr Richard Smith FRCOphth, Co-Chair of the Joint Working Group on Commissioning on behalf of The Royal College of Ophthalmologists said: “This is an opportunity to say ‘here are the best examples of cost-effective, high quality care; now let us put them into practice’.”
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