Championing Equitable Eye Care for Homeless People – Vision Care for Homeless People is pleased to announce the launch of an alliance with its partners: The Optical Confederation, Thomas Pocklington Trust, and Pathway Healthcare for Homeless People.
The Homeless Eye Health Alliance has been established to champion equitable eye care for homeless people. It is a group of organisations and individuals who wish to persuade government to remove the barriers that homeless people face in getting the NHS eye care they need.
Homeless people have significant eye care needs which are often neglected. They have a high level of uncorrected refractive error and a high level of eye health problems, yet face considerable barriers in obtaining the NHS eye care they need and are entitled to.
We believe this to be a moral, equality and public health issue that can be addressed relatively easily by NHS England, with insignificant cost to the public purse.
Homeless people suffer poor access to eye care because the NHS England contract conditions through which primary eye care is provided were designed for the general population rather than homeless people.
We are calling on the government to:
Make simple amendments to the General Ophthalmic Services (Opticians) Contract Regulations to improve access to NHS care for homeless people.
And to create eye care pathways into and out of secondary care to improve eye disease outcomes for homeless people.
Please join us in our efforts to ensure people who are homeless get the eye care they need. Join our Alliance. Partnership is free of charge, but we do ask you to commit to:
•Seeking to sign up three new people or organisations to the Alliance.
•Researching your network for people connected or with influence on this issue and introducing them to the lead organisations within the Alliance.
•Using your communications channels to publicise the Alliance and seek support for its aims.
Help bring the gift of sight to more homeless people. Please circulate this request to your network.
“Double Vision” photograph (c) Shine Gonzalvez 2015