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Bury launches community optometry scheme


25 April 2014

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A new 12-month pilot scheme for minor eye conditions has been commissioned by Bury clinical commissioning group (CCG). 
Community optometrists will provide treatments for a range of minor eye conditions. The CCG hopes this will avoid the need to attend general practice or hospitals. 
The service will run for: 
 – Red eye or eyelids.
 – Dry eye or uncomfortable eyes. 
 – Irritation and inflammation of the eye. 
 – Flashes and floaters. 

A new 12-month pilot scheme for minor eye conditions has been commissioned by Bury clinical commissioning group (CCG). 
Community optometrists will provide treatments for a range of minor eye conditions. The CCG hopes this will avoid the need to attend general practice or hospitals. 
The service will run for: 
 – Red eye or eyelids.
 – Dry eye or uncomfortable eyes. 
 – Irritation and inflammation of the eye. 
 – Flashes and floaters. 
 – Ingrowing eyelashes. 
 – Other minor eye conditions. 
The service will be available across the network of 12 practices to people of all ages, six days a week, Monday to Saturday, with some availability on evenings and Sundays. 
The CCG believes the service will reduce waiting times, as patients will be invited for an examination within 24 hours for urgent cases and within a few days for routine appointments. 
Dr Kiran Patel, chair and clinical lead for Bury CCG said: “This scheme will allow for patients to be seen closer to home, more quickly and over a wider time frame. Optometrists will work closely with GPs, pharmacists and ophthalmologists, improving communications between professionals and ultimately improving the patient experience and care.
“With an increasingly ageing population in Bury, we think this will be a really well utilised service. In the first year alone, we predict that around 2,000 patients registered with a Bury GP will benefit from this service.”
Paul Cheetham, Chairman, Heywood, Middleton, Rochdale and Bury Local Optical Committee said: “This service will be much quicker and more accessible for the patient, closer to home and available at more convenient times. It will also free up valuable time for their GP and the Hospital Eye Clinics to see other patients.
“Bury Optometrists have worked hard to introduce this service, and are looking forward to providing greater levels of care for their patients.”

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