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Restoring Ophthalmology Services

RCOphth is continually assessing the impact of COVID-19 on patients, the profession and on the hospital eye services in the UK. Read the latest guidance and information on recommendations for the restoration of ophthalmology services.

Healthcare services are now planning how to move from full lockdown with severely restricted activities to re-opening services whilst there will be continuing and potentially variable levels of restrictions for potentially many months. Issues related to physical distancing and infection control procedures are also likely to limit available capacity. There will need to be a phased approach and a continuing requirement to prioritise care.

Restarting Cataract Services

Join Mike Burdon, Philip Bloom, Melanie Hingorani, Jonathan Bhargava, Lawrence Gnanaraj and Declan Flanagan for a comprehensive look at restarting cataract services, covering. You can also find the webinar Powerpoint slides here.

Restoring Ophthalmology Services During The Pandemic

Resumption of Cataract Services

RCOphth and GIRFT have developed joint guidance. High flow cataract surgery needs to resume now to address the backlog and provide patients with a timely service. Failure to do so will compromise the quality of life for patients. Restoration of cataract services will require a detailed review/redesign of the whole cataract pathway to ensure a safe environment for patients and staff.

Glaucoma Management Plans

This guidance provides pragmatic advice on recommencing care for glaucoma patients based on clinical expertise from a variety of clinical settings around the UK. The scope of this document is to provide advice for the ‘recovery phase’ rather than the acute lockdown phase. We anticipate this phase will cover perhaps the next 6 months or so. Some of the points will be germane to longer term ‘post COVID-19’ services.

Restarting Medical Retina Services

This guidance has been developed by a group of medical retinal specialists as requested by the RCOphth in response to the pandemic to provide generic guidance on the resumption of medical retina services. Individual eye departments should tailor this guidance, taking into account their staffing, their infrastructure, the needs of their local population as well as the expectations of local commissioners and regional NHS organisations.

Reopening & Redeveloping Ophthalmology Services

This document aims to support decision making and, where possible, provide guidance on how to reopen ophthalmology services after the Covid pandemic lockdown. Its purpose is to support ophthalmic clinical leads, ophthalmic consultants, managers and directors of hospital eye services to plan the recovery phase whilst incorporating service transformation beneficial for long term sustainability of ophthalmology care.

Prioritisation Of Ophthalmic Procedures

The RCOphth has produced a prioritisation tool to allow services to plan re-opening of procedure and surgical care, which takes into account both the safe and appropriate timing and the risk of harm to patients if this timing cannot be adhered to. Although all patients will need assessment for their individual situation, we hope this will be helpful in planning care and to support discussions with non-ophthalmic, theatre staff and managers in ensuring safe provision of ophthalmic procedures during the recovery phase.

Non Contact Tonometry & IOL

Updated guidance in conjunction with the College of Optometrists on the use of non-contact tonometry to measure intra-ocular pressure during COVID-19.

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