South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and NHS Tees Valley Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) have launched a temporary service to help people receive eye care without the need to attend hospital while COVID-19 restrictions remain in place.
The new Community Rapid Eye Care Service (CRES) has been designed to help people with urgent eye concerns including the onset of red painful eye or sudden loss of vision.
Patients who require a face to face appointment will be able to be seen at the community clinic, Low Grange Health Village, Middlesbrough.
Existing processes are still in place for people with more acute needs who will continue to be referred to the emergency eye casualty at The James Cook University Hospital.
Yasmin Scott, senior service manager, South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said: “This temporary service has been created in partnership with the Clinical Commissioning Group to provide eye care advice.
“The new service will not include fixing patients glasses or for patients general queries.
“The Community Rapid Eye Care Service does intend to signpost people to appropriate services and minor treatments in the community during COVID-19.”
The service, which is available to people of all ages, Monday to Friday between 9am until 4pm, will minimise face-to-face consultations by carrying out telephone or video calls leading to a care plan for patients.
People can access the service directly by contacting 07970254059 or referrals can be made by their GP or community optometrist.
For urgent eye concerns out of hours or on a weekend contact NHS111.