Vision screening of 4 to 5 year olds at school entry

The College of Optometrists made this Freedom of Information request to NHS Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group

This request has been closed to new correspondence. Contact us if you think it should be reopened.

The request was partially 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


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 Calderdale, NHS Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group

Dear Olivia

FOI Ref: 1920084

Thank you for your application for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 received on 31st August 2019.

We are looking into your request and will respond to you within the 20 working day deadline. The response due date for your request is 29th September 2019.

Under the Freedom of Information Act your request may be subject to one or more exemptions which the CCG is entitled to apply in order to refuse your request, either wholly or in part. In some circumstances, once the information has been identified, the CCG may also levy a fee for processing and delivering the information to you. In such circumstances we will notify you as soon as possible of exemptions which may apply or any fees to be charged.

Please note that if we are having any difficulties retrieving the information you have requested we will let you know.

If you require any further assistance with handling this request, then please do not hesitate to contact us quoting the FOI Ref shown above by email: [NHS Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group request email]

Kind regards

Emily Addison
Corporate team administrator
PA to Judith Salter Head of Corporate Affairs and Governance
PA to Martin Pursey Head of Contracting and Procurement
NHS Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group 
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FOI Calderdale, NHS Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group

1 Attachment

Dear Olivia

Please find the CCG's reposnse to your request attached.

Andrew O’Connor
Corporate Governance Officer
NHS Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group 
5th Floor, F Mill, Dean Clough, Halifax HX3 5AX

5 Email: Andrew.O’[email address]
ATel:      01422 307438
 Fax:     01422 281301


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