Emergency Eye Care treatment centres have been set up in all of Scotland’s Health Board areas so that patients will not need to attend hospital.
The Centres have been backed with £3million of funding from the Scottish Government. Patients will be able to have face to face consultations but first have to be Covid19 free and have a pre- consultation by telephone or through a community optometrist.
A teleophthalmology system developed in collaboration by the University of Strathclyde, NHS Grampian and NHS Forth Valley will connect specialists using a telemedicine platform used by NHS Scotland. This is in place now in several Health Board areas.
Dr Mario Giardini from the University of Strathclyde’s Department of Biomedical Engineering, who developed the system in collaboration with NHS consultant and Strathclyde honorary lecturer Dr Iain Livingstone, said:
“The system has allowed a new way of working.
“Strathclyde is working in an advisory role on the hardware side of the project. We have identified devices that can be used to link the optometry instruments to the NHS Attend Anywhere network.”
Dr Livingstone,Project Lead and NHS Forth Valley Consultant Ophthalmologist, said:
“COVID-19 has completely disrupted traditional eye care and it is now critical to avoid unnecessary hospital visits, reduce crowded clinics, and treat patients in their own home. Modern mobile technology enables this.”
This is a much necessary step after eye care services were suspended on March 23rd.
The new centres have been fully equipped with PPE (Personal Protection Equipment).