Sheffield Local Optometric Committee

Secretary’s Report Year Ending 31 March 2008

Secretary’s Report for year ending March 2008

Fairwell to Jon Stokes as Secretary

During 2007-8 Jon had increased demand for his talents and handed over position of Sheffield LOC secretary to myself. He is still working at STHT and is involved with the development of Sheffield Vision Centre headed by Mathew Edwards. We now have a laser in Sheffield for sight correction, and the future looks bright. Jon continues to attend the LOC to help with among other things communications between primary and secondary eyecare.

Good News and Bad News!

In April 2008 the OJPG (Ophthalmic Joint Planning Group) finally managed to meet again after eighteen months, after pressure from the Low Vision Consultative committee, Chaired by Norman Creighton, on the PCT. The meeting took place because the committee felt they had nowhere in the PCT to take their ideas. At the meeting it was decided that after the reorganisation of the Sheffield PCT and commissioning now being more Practice Based (GP led) there was not a role for this group and it was decided it will not meet again.

The following day Kay Logan who is Locality General Manager in the Strategy Directorate met with Mike Daybell (Chair) and Alex Gage (Secretary) to discuss how the PCT and the LOC could work together in future. She seemed to take on board the frustrations of the LOC for the last year and is looking to facilitate better working relationships. There are going to be seven work streams of which ophthalmology would be one. Diabetic eye screening will be reviewed by Jeremy Wight Director for Public Health at the PCT. The LOC will need to continue to work with Practice Based Consortia and the PCT will help with data needed to push this work forward.

There has been a lot of hard work done this year by the LOC regarding different pathways of work.

Michael Daybell has worked hard with others on the Glaucoma referral refinement scheme which is now up and running city wide. Practitioners are still refining their own referrals (not other colleagues) and PCT is paying them for their time.

Shirley Blundell and Gerry Cowley have been working on a Children’s pathway to help reduce the waiting times for appointments at Sheffield Children’s hospital, and improve access for patients.

Rob Hughes and Will Walters have continued to represent the LOC at the Diabetic eye screening committee and there may be some improve communication from photographers to the main database in the near future.

Michael Daybell has been working with two Sheffield GP consortia to start triaging ophthalmic referrals and has made good progress in difficult circumstances.

Alex Gage has taken over the links with Low vision consultative committee from David Shepherd.

Sue Stentiford has work hard with various staff at the PCT and David Inman (Sheffield Optometric Advisor) on the Clinical governance issues.

We wish David Shepherd and David Timmings well as they leave the LOC and welcome new members including Phil Banton and Ian Van Hoof and we hope to see more new faces as our workload and challenges increase.

August 2008 will bring the implementation of the new GOS contract. As Jon stated in last years report the English version is not as good as I could be and when compared to the Welsh and Scottish contracts we may feel hard done to. I feel we will need to work hard and closely with Sheffield PCT to make sure we make the best of the situation. I hope to improve communication from LOC to optometrists in Sheffield in the coming year and encourage better use of the SLOC website.

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