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New Clinic To Fight Rising Prevalence Of Glaucoma

17 December 2015

The Andrews Labor Government will invest $200,000 in a new clinic providing specialist preventive care for patients at risk of glaucoma.

Speaking at the 30th anniversary celebration for the Victorian Eyecare Service today, Minister for Health Jill Hennessy announced funding for the Australian College of Optometry to establish the new clinic.

Glaucoma is the leading cause of preventable and irreversible blindness worldwide and in Victoria affects more than 200,000 people.

The clinic, a partnership between the Australian College of Optometry, and the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, will trial an innovative model of care for low risk glaucoma patients.

It will provide earlier, preventive treatment for people with suspected glaucoma or low risk glaucoma, before the disease becomes serious.

As a result, the clinic is expected to reduce waiting lists at the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital. The clinic is expected to be established in early 2016.

The clinic will see between 80 to 100 people per month, as well as providing shared clinical training for optometrists and orthoptists.

Ms Hennessy also paid tribute to the wonderful work of the Victorian Eyecare Service in providing vital eye care services for disadvantaged Victorians over the past 30 years.

The Victorian Eyecare Service was established in 1985, by the then Labor Government, to provide statewide subsidised eye care and visual aids for Victorians who experience barriers to accessing mainstream services such as Aboriginal Victorians, people in supported residential services and public sector residential aged care, people experiencing homelessness, and youth justice and disability clients.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Jill Hennessy

“As our population ages, the prevalence of glaucoma will continue to rise, placing added demand on Victoria’s eye care services and the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital.”

“We’re responding to this challenge by funding a more effective and efficient model of care that will ensure low risk glaucoma patients receive earlier care and treatment.”

“Congratulations to the Victorian Eyecare Service on 30 years of providing eye care and glasses for the Victorians who need it the most.”

Reviewed 10 February 2021

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