Vision screening of 4 to 5 year olds at school entry

Response to this request is delayed. By law, Hammersmith and Fulham Borough Council should normally have responded promptly and by (details)

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?

H and F In Touch, Hammersmith and Fulham Borough Council

Our reference: 1535995
 
 
Dear Mr. Denève 
 
Thank you for your request for information that was received on 1 July
2019.  Your request has been summarised as follows:
 
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?
 
We are dealing with your request under the Freedom of Information Act
2000and we aim to send a response by 29 July 2019- this is 20 working days
from the date of receipt. 
 
The Freedom of Information Act 2000may restrict the release of some or all
of the information you have requested. We will carry out an assessment and
if any exemptionsapply to some or all of the information then we might not
provide that information to you. We will inform you if this is the case
and advise you of your rights to request an internal review.
 
We will also advise you if we cannot provide you with the information
requested for any other reason together with the reason(s) why and details
of how you may appeal (if appropriate).
 
 
If you are registered for self-service via the Council My Account portal,
you can track the progress of your request online:  [1]Track case progress
 
Yours sincerely
 
 
h&f InTouch team
 
_____________________________________________________________________________

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The College of Optometrists

Dear FOI Officer,

I would be grateful if you could answer my FOI.

Thank you.

Best regards,
Olivier Deneve