Review to be conducted into benefits of free eye care in Scotland
18 May 2011 00:00 in Medical Government/ NHS related news
A review is to be conducted over the coming year to assess the impact of the introduction of free eye care services in Scotland.
Researchers from the University of Aberdeen are to conduct the assessment, funded by the Chief Scientist Office, which will evaluate to what extent the policy has met its objectives since being introduced in 2006.
The Scottish government implemented this measure to encourage wider use of optometry services and ensure that most residents have access to full eye health examinations, rather than simple sight tests, via high street optometrists.
An exploratory pilot study suggests that the proportion of the Scottish population having eye examinations rose from 31.5 percent in 2008 to 34.2 percent in 2010.
Dr Alexandros Zangelidis, the leader of the new study, said: "The results of this study are expected to help in prioritising government health expenditure in relation to free eye examinations in Scotland."
Last month, consumer group Which? suggested that inconsistency in the rates of participation in eye exams among English children could be exposing many to the risk of developing vision problems later in life.
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