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