Eye screen­ing goes lo­cal

South Waikato News - - Your Paper, Your Place - SUPPLIED

A trial ini­tia­tive is set to ben­e­fit those liv­ing with di­a­betes­re­lated reti­nal (eye) dis­ease in Toko­roa.

The Waikato District Health Board (WDHB) and Pater­son Burn Op­tometrists have started a one-year trial in Toko­roa to pro­vide screen­ing for the dis­ease by com­mu­nity-based op­tometrists.

The in­tent of the ini­tia­tive is to pro­vide more con­ve­nience and greater ser­vice ac­ces­si­bil­ity to the Toko­roa com­mu­nity, as the ser­vice will be lo­cated in the cen­tre of town.

Nor­mally, reti­nal screen­ing is done by tak­ing a pho­to­graph of the retina of the eye by a WDHB mo­bile ser­vice. The pho­to­graphs are later re­viewed by an op­tometrist at the Waikato Hos­pi­tal Eye Clinic. In the past, if pho­to­graphs were not ad­e­quate then the pa­tient would need an ex­am­i­na­tion by the Waikato Hos­pi­tal Eye Clinic op­tometrist in Hamilton.

With this ini­tia­tive, Pater­son Burn Op­tom­e­try in Toko­roa will be able to do the reti­nal pho­to­graphs, eval­u­ate them, and do fur­ther op­tom­e­try eval­u­a­tion if the reti­nal pho­to­graphs are not ad­e­quate, all on the same day.

The part­ner­ship with Pater­son Burn is ex­pected to have flow-on ef­fi­cien­cies for the Waikato DHB, with fewer re­fer­rals of pa­tients to the Waikato Hos­pi­tal Eye Clinic op­tometrists how­ever if peo­ple do have reti­nal dis­ease that re­quires treat­ment, this will still oc­cur at the Waikato Hos­pi­tal Eye Clinic.

BOWIE15/123RF

Di­a­betes-re­lated eye dis­ease screen­ing can be done in Toko­roa.

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