College push for better funding in vision care
Royal College welcomes extra NHS funding and warns of workforce pressures
The Royal College of Ophthalmologists (RCOphth) has welcomed extra funding for the NHS to tackle the elective surgery backlog and that the government had identified delays in cataract surgery as a particular concern.
The RCOphth said: “Delays to cataract surgery can have a significant impact on a patient’s ability to retain their lifestyle, independence, and caring responsibilities and could lead to falls and other preventable accidents.”
The RCOphth has also called for long-term investment in the ophthalmology workforce to meet future patient needs.
Professor Bernie Chang, RCOphth President, said: “The commitment to more funding to tackle backlogs will be a relief for ophthalmologists and other eye healthcare staff battling long waiting lists. Too many patients are waiting too long for ophthalmology services, with over half a million people now waiting for treatment.”
He added: “An increase in the supply of ophthalmologists and other eye care professionals is needed given we know that patient demand will rise significantly. This huge challenge can only be addressed by effective long-term workforce planning in addition to infrastructure and IT investment.”