Council’s service for partially sighted people praised by leading industry group

Release Date: 21 November 2017

The service provided to people with sight loss in Richmond upon Thames has been praised by a leading industry group.

The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB), the UK’s leading charity supporting blind and partially sighted people, visited the council late last year and was impressed with the outstanding service being provided. 

The RNIB encourages a See, Plan, Provide service. That means everyone with a visual impairment must receive a specialist face to face assessment, have a plan in place and be provided an agreed rehabilitation support programme.

Whilst people in most London boroughs could experience longer waiting times, people in Richmond are guaranteed to receive a face-to-face appointment with a specialist and have a plan of support within 2 weeks.

The Council will host an event the Wednesday 22 November with more than fifty people invited to hear about best practice and improving vision rehabilitation services.

Cllr David Marlow, Cabinet member for Adult Services and Health said:

“This is a great endorsement of the borough’s visual impairment services. Losing your sight can be a traumatic experience and it’s important that when this happens people are able to access the right services in a timely manner.

“We hope to work with other boroughs across London, and share best practices to ensure people continue to access quality sight loss services as soon as they can.”   

Tricia Smikle, RNIB Network Manager for London, said:

“We know that providing vision rehabilitation services improves the lives of people with sight loss and significantly outweighs the delivery cost to local health and social care budgets.

“It’s vital local authorities provide vision rehabilitation services in a timely manner so people with sight loss receive the support they need to maintain their independence.

“We hope other local authorities will be inspired by Richmond’s example.”

Notes for editors

If you are a journalist and would like further information about this press release, contact Lyle Skipsey on 020 8487 5182. 

Reference: P541/17

Updated: 1 December 2017