Vision screening of 4 to 5 year olds at school entry

The request was successful.

The College of Optometrists

Dear FOI officer

The British and Irish Orthoptic Society on behalf of the Clinical Council for Eye Health Commissioning are writing to make an open request for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

There is a national recommendation, by the UK National Screening committee, to offer orthoptic-led vision screening to children at aged 4-5 years, mainly to ensure that amblyopia (reduced vision), is detected and treated at an age where treatment has the potential to improve vision.

Public Health England introduced service specifications for a Vision Screening Service in 2017. We are concerned that a Vision Screening service is currently not being offered to all children aged 4-5 years in England leading to inequality of eye health care provision.

We are aware that the responsibility for commissioning 0 - 5 year children’s public health services has transferred from the NHS to Local Authorities; and that in addition there are to be significant cuts to Local Authority Public Health funding which may affect these services

We would be grateful if you could answer the following questions (for the financial year 2019/2020) to determine the arrangements made by your local authority to commission vision screening for your eligible resident population and it’s quality assurance.

We look forward to hearing from you.
Yours sincerely,
Olivier Denève
Secretary to the Clinical Council for Eye Health Commissioning

Questions

1. Do you currently commission vision screening in school of children aged 4-5 years old? Y / N

If YES, would you please:

2. List the key features of your commissioned screening service:

a. Settings (e.g. school).
b. Screening personnel (e.g. orthoptist, school nurse or other health professional).
c. The onward care pathway for children who fail the vision screening.
d. The quality assurance (QA) processes (audit) and identified clinical lead for the vision screening service

3. Tell us how you monitor if every child in your Local Authority has been tested (including those in private schools or those who are home-schooled).

4. Tell us whether the programme will be commissioned again in the next financial year

5. If NO- you do not currently commission a vision screening service in your area, would you please tell us :

a. why you do not commission vision screening?
b. whether a service is planned for the next financial year (2020/21)?
c. whether an existing service in your area has been recently decommissioned?

foi, Middlesbrough Council

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foi, Middlesbrough Council

 

Dear Ms Deneve 

 

REF NO: 014599  

 

I am writing to confirm that Middlesbrough Council has now completed its
search for the information you requested on 24 June 2019. 

 

In your request you asked for the following information:

 

1. Do you currently commission vision screening in school of children aged
4-5 years old?

 

Response: Yes

 

If YES, would you please:

 

2. List the key features of your commissioned screening service:

 

a. Settings (e.g. school).

 

Response: In schools

 

b. Screening personnel (e.g. orthoptist, school nurse or other health
professional).

 

Response: School Nurse Assistant who is trained in logmar screening

 

c. The onward care pathway for children who fail the vision screening.

 

Response: In place

 

d. The quality assurance (QA) processes (audit) and identified clinical
lead for the vision screening service

 

Response: Yes in place and we have an identified lead in the Trust

 

3. Tell us how you monitor if every child in your Local Authority has been
tested (including those in private schools or those who are
home-schooled).

 

Response: Performance data is sent to the commissioner, screening is only
offered in mainstream school and take up can be monitored against school
role

 

4. Tell us whether the programme will be commissioned again in the next
financial year

 

Response: Vision screening is incorporated into the 0-19 commissioned
service which is an ongoing contract until March 2026

 

5. If NO- you do not currently commission a vision screening service in
your area, would you please tell us :

 

a. why you do not commission vision screening?

b. whether a service is planned for the next financial year (2020/21)?

c. whether an existing service in your area has been recently
decommissioned?

 

If you have any queries about this response, please do not hesitate to
email [1][Middlesbrough Council request email]. Please remember to quote the reference
number shown above in any future communications.

If you are unhappy with the way your request has been handled you may ask
for an internal review within 40 days of receipt of the response. You
should write to:-

Ann-Marie Johnstone

Governance & Information Manager

P.O. Box 500,

Civic Centre,

Middlesbrough.

TS1 9FT

 

If you are not content with the outcome of the internal review, you have
the right to apply directly to the Information Commissioner for an
independent review. The Information Commissioner can be contacted at: -

 

Information Commissioner’s Office,
Wycliffe House,
Water Lane,
Wilmslow,
Cheshire,
SK9 5AF

Yours sincerely

 

Steph Robson

Information Requests Coordinator

 

Finance, Governance and Support

Strategy, Information and Governance

Middlesbrough Council

P.O. Box 500
Civic Centre
Middlesbrough
TS1 9FT

Email:   [2][Middlesbrough Council request email]

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