Eye Health Week: Explaining the Easy Eye Care service
My name is Rebecca and I am an Eye Care Champion for SeeAbility in the North West. This is my blog written for National Eye Health Week.
My job as an Eye Care Champion is to help people with learning disabilities to look after their eyes. Did you know that people with learning disabilities are 10 times more likely to have sight problems than other people? I have a learning disability so this affects me too.
Eye care is very important to me because I have a “lazy eye” and have poor vision in my right eye. I always remind people that if someone has poor vision in one eye, you need to put their cup of tea down on the side of their good vision so they don’t knock it over.
We are very busy at SeeAbility at the moment promoting a new eye care pathway for people with learning disabilities and autistic people in the North West. It is one of the few places in England to have set up this service.
I have been making lots of phone calls and sending emails to tell people about the service which is called Easy Eye Care.
The Easy Eye Care service lets people have longer eye tests or several shorter appointments if they need them with local opticians who have had special training.
The person and their carer fill in a pre-appointment form About Me and My Eyes to give to the optometrist.
The person then receives a plain English Eye Test Results form after the appointment.
Lots of the people I have spoken to didn’t know about the service. SeeAbility believes that people with learning disabilities should have an eye test every year, to make sure their eyes are healthy and to check they can see well.
I am often asked to email information about the Easy Eye Care service. I let people know that you can search for your nearest participating optician through our Find an optometrist tool. There is also a list of participating practices for the North West.
When you book your appointment, remember to say it is for the Easy Eye Care service for someone with learning disabilities.
I am passionate about helping people to look after their eyes and love talking to people about it. If you would like a presentation from me or my colleagues Joanne or Dave, please get in touch. We talk to groups of people with learning disabilities, plus eye care, learning disability and health professionals too.
Don’t forget to pass on the information in this blog so that everyone gets to hear about Easy Eye Care. While you do that, I’ll carry on promoting the pathway and helping people to be “eye care aware”!