Helping people with sight loss
2 April 2021
Giving emotional and practical support to patients coping with sight loss makes an incredible difference. Moorfields’ eye clinic liaison service gives patients confidence, advice and connects them with others. It has helped hundreds of patients during the pandemic.
Being diagnosed with an eye condition can be difficult to come to terms with. It can be an extremely confusing and uncertain time, and in many cases emotionally traumatic. People with sight loss are three times more likely to suffer depression.
blind and partially sighted people in the UK are not being offered formal counselling by their eye clinic after diagnosis.
With this in mind, Moorfields Eye Hospital created the eye clinic liaison service, providing emotional support and practical help to patients including information on services outside the hospital.
Eye clinic liaison service
The eye clinic liaison service plays a critical role bridging the gap between the hospital and support in the community. They provide patients with information on eye conditions and eye health and using assistive technology. It can help with:
- Daily living skills and staying independent
- Understanding welfare rights
- Remaining in employment or re-training
- Mental health and emotional wellbeing
- Children’s services and where to get help with difficulties at school.
Extending support across the Moorfields network
Eye clinic liaison support has grown from a collection of pilot programmes into a team across the Moorfields network of sites.
Moorfields patients supported in a year
I absolutely love empowering patients, giving them the tools and resources to regain their confidence and thrive as individuals living with sight loss.
Jessica Price, Eye clinic liaison officer coordinator, Moorfields Eye Hospital
Support during the pandemic
The eye clinic liaison team supports patients in the hospital and remotely including running virtual events. They help patients complete their certificate of vision impairments (CVIs). This is important as it formally certifies someone as visually impaired and acts as a referral for a social care assessment.
patients helped with their certificate of vision impairments (CVIs) - April 2020- February 2021
I would just like to say thank you. Thank you for being in work during this time and not forgetting about us.
Since 2012 we have supported the eye clinic liaison service because of the vital importance of looking at patients’ needs as a whole: psychological and practical, as well as medical.
Frances Carey, Chair, Marie-Louise von Motesiczky Charitable Trust
Moorfields has future plans for more eye clinic liaison officer virtual talks sharing information and advice, and the Eye Chat programme – patient-led groups on different eye conditions.
We are grateful for the support of the Marie-Louise von Motesiczky Charitable Trust