86% of us in the UK fear losing our sight over any other sense, yet 1 in 5 of people will live with some form of sight loss during their life. Already, over 2 million people across the country live their daily lives with impaired vision - with that number set to double over the next 30 years.
Fortunately, half of all sight loss is avoidable. Looking after your eyes, going for regular sight tests and getting conditions diagnosed and treated quickly all help you protect your sight. This National Eye Health Week, we wanted to highlight how Moorfields Eye Charity is helping the UK avoid losing its sight – because we believe that people’s sight matters.
We fund research
We fund world-leading research at Moorfields Eye Hospital and the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology which helps us better understand eye diseases and develop new, better treatments to help save people’s sight.
We’ve funded research into all aspects of eye health, from a new, more effective way to treat glaucoma using a laser-based approach, to revolutionary advances in using artificial intelligence (AI) or genetic data to diagnose patients, to supporting the world-leading ‘London Project to cure blindness’ - part of the global effort to tackle age-related macular degeneration (AMD), one of the most common causes of blindness in older people.
We invest in education
To deliver excellent care, you need excellent staff. Our recent summer appeal was hugely successful, and has allowed us to purchase a new surgical simulator for the Moorfields surgical training programme. This will ensure surgeons across the trust get the best possible training, which means even better outcomes for their patients.
But prevention is better than a cure, so we’re also supporting eye health education in the community to teach people how to better look after their eyes. We’ve funded the nationwide, award-winning campaign ‘Eye Heroes’, which trains children to be eye health ambassadors and spread the message about the importance of regular eye tests.
We care about patient care
Patient care is at the centre of everything Moorfields does, so we provide funding to help Moorfields staff enhance the patient experience and ensure everyone gets the best possible care. Our new innovation grants are designed to encourage all staff across the trust to develop and test new ideas that will improve clinical care and the patient experience.
Sadly, even with fantastic care, sight loss becomes a reality for many people, so we also support the quality of life of patients who have lost part or all of their sight. Eye Clinic Liaison Officers (ECLOs) now meet with thousands of patients a year across the trust to offer emotional support along with practical information and advice, helping them deal with potentially devastating news about their sight. Thanks to a generous donation from the Marie-Louise von Motesiczky Charitable Trust, Moorfields Eye Charity is now funding a new ELCO coordinator to oversee and develop this programme, allowing the trust to offer more support to a greater number of patients with sight loss.
Everything we do is made possible thanks to your support – it’s really our supporters who fund world-class research, education and care at Moorfields. So thank you to everyone out there whose generous donations help us make a life-changing difference to people with sight loss.
Could you help us do even more?