A new service launched this week that will see more patients with eye conditions treated in community settings.
Brent Community Ophthalmology Service opened yesterday (September 22) and will provide community-based, consultant-led outpatient services for patients with ophthalmic conditions such as blurred vision, watery eyes, retinal lesions and visual field defects.
The service will deliver care from two community sites in Brent – Sudbury Primary Care Centre and Willesden Centre for Health & Care – and will offer extended opening hours, on-site admin support for rapid documentation turnaround and a discharge summary containing management advice for GPs and patients.
This service, which is being provided by BMI Healthcare and commissioned by NHS Brent Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), will be accessible via GP referrals only.
Dr Ethie Kong, a local GP in Brent and chair of NHS Brent CCG, said:
“For the first time we will have consultants providing ophthalmology treatment to patients in a community setting.
“Having services based nearer to peoples’ homes makes it easier for people to get treatment and helps them to manage their condition, reducing the chances of it getting worse.
“I am confident that patients will benefit from the extended opening hours and easily accessible community sites this new service will provide.”
Jan Thomas, NHS commercial director at BMI Healthcare, said:
“Brent Community Ophthalmology Service will provide consultant led multidisciplinary care for a range of common eye conditions, allowing patients to be seen and diagnosed close to home. The centres offer treatment six days a week, allowing patients to be seen after work or on a Saturday.
“The service will provide the most up-to-date diagnostic equipment and access to ophthalmic specialists for the management of complex eye conditions. It will also facilitate onward referral to specialists who will treat eye conditions where required in a hospital setting.”