Community Children's Eye Clinics
We have restarted most of our clinics following closure of all clinics during the national lockdown COVID-19 response.earlier this year
We are providing Specialist optometric support to the Community Children's Eye Service clinics (as part of a contract with NHS Leeds Community Healthcare Trust) at the following health centres:
- East Leeds
- Reginald centre (CDC)
- St. Georges (reopened but in different part of building)
- Wortley Beck (CDC)
Most of the children seen in these clinics are referred by the School Nursing team following a visual acuity screening, which is carried out in primary schools during the reception year. Children are also referred to the service by Health visitors, GPs, community optometrists and community paediatricians.
Orthoptists who specialise in measuring children's vision and binocularity (ability to use their two eyes together) will assess children who have been referred. Any child found to have a problem with their vision or binocularity will be followed up or treated in the centres.
Specialist Optometrists will usually undertake a check to see if glasses are needed, using cycloplegic refraction (using special eye drops); non-cycloplegic refraction or dynamic retinoscopy ( a measure of focussing power at near) as required. they will also carry out an assessment of the health of the back of the eye (fundus) using a special head mounted torch and lens called a Binocular Indirect Ophthalmoscopy (BIO).
A small number of children are referred in to the Hospital Eye Service at St. James's University Hospital for Consultant Ophthalmologist opinion or squint surgery.
The administration of the clinics is based at Stockdale house. The Head of Orthoptic Services, provides the main link for the management of the service between the Community Service and the Leeds Teaching Hospitals Trust. The Orthoptic Clinical Specialist, provides the link for day to day service issues. The Optometry service is managed by the Consultant Optometrist (Head of Optometry Services), Tim Hunter.
How do I make an appointment with this service?
To be seen in the clinic you must usually be referred by your School Nurse, Health visitor, GPs, Community optometrist or community paediatrician.
Clinics supported by Specialist Optometrists run at various clinics throughout the city on every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday morning and occasional Friday afternoons.
Patients attending this clinic will normally have an orthoptic assessment first and then if seeing an optometrist they will be made an appointment with cycloplegic eye drops sent to parents prior to the appointment to be instilled by parents in the child's eyes either the day before or the morning of the appointment. Children will then attend with their focussing muscles relaxed and their pupils dilated. They will then be seen at their appointment time by the Specialist optometrist, so will usually be in clinic for at least half an hour for either an orthoptic or optometric appointment.