I have Glaucoma but my clinic appointment / eye examination has been delayed, what should I do?

Routine clinic appointments and surgery are just starting to be resumed. Unfortunately, in order to provide a safe environment for those routine clinics it is necessary to reduce the number of appointments for each clinic.

It is likely therefore that many people with glaucoma will have further delays in their appointments. The length of delay will depend on the hospital you attend, the severity and stability of your eye condition. Patient records are checked and those that are most in need of an appointment will be prioritised.

Glaucoma is a group of conditions that result in damage to the optic nerve. The majority of cases are chronic glaucoma that is very slow progressing and if you have been told previously that your condition is stable it is very unlikely that this delay in your appointment will cause a serious change in your vision. If you have previously been told that your condition is not stable but you haven’t been contacted by the hospital regarding your next appointment we suggest that you call or email your consultant’s medical secretary or the ECLO at your hospital to ask what the arrangements are for you.

Eye examinations for glaucoma patients

Routine eye examinations are now available in England, with the rest of the UK having emergency eye care available at some local opticians. If you are worried about your eyes or your eye pressure, or just want reassurance but don’t yet have a hospital appointment contact your local opticians to ask for advice and support.

In all routine eye examinations for people with glaucoma the eye pressure and visual fields will be measured, and many optometrists will also image the optic nerve. This means that a routine eye examination will help to detect any change that needs the attention of your consultant. You can request an NHS eye examination if you have noticed a change in your vision but if you were seen within the last year and have no symptoms there may be a charge for the appointment. It is a good idea to check whether the NHS will cover your appointment. When you go to the opticians make sure you take with you any letters or reports from your consultant and the name of any medications you are using.

If you need further advice or support during this time, please call RNIB on 0303 123 9999 or visit the gov.uk coronavirus (Covid-19) web pages, along with additional information for ScotlandWales and Northern Ireland.

 

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