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This booklet is an introductory pack to the referral procedures in Solihull including MECS, Cataract and IOP repeat measures pathways
 
 
MECS – Minor Eye Conditions Service
 
You can download the current formulary list here (June 2016)
 
MECs – current list of participating practices can be found here (April 2016)
 
**As a reminder, please in the first instance CHECK if the Patient’s GP is a Solihull, Sandwell or West Birmingham GP otherwise you cannot offer a MECs service**
The website www.eyecarewm.co.uk is very useful to determine which area the patient’s GP is registered under.
You can find a list of GPs registered in Solihull CCG here
 

A Minor Eye Conditions Service (MECS) examination (previously called Primary Eyecare Assessment and Referral Service assessment – MECS) will provide a timely assessment of the needs of a patient presenting with an eye condition. This will be undertaken by an accredited optometrist within suitably equipped premises who will manage the patient appropriately and safely. Management will be maintained within the primary care setting for as many patients as possible, thus avoiding unnecessary referrals to hospital services. Where referral to secondary care is required it will be within agreed protocols to a suitable specialist with appropriate urgency.

Patients can self-refer and will be sign-posted from GPs, pharmacists, A&E, Hospital Eye casualty telephone triage or non-accredited optometrists.

Using the skills of primary care optometrists to triage, manage and prioritise patients presenting with an eye condition, patient care will be improved by:

  • Reduction in unnecessary referrals to eye casualty clinics thus supporting secondary care to manage ophthalmology capacity
  • More cost-effective care
  • Speedier access to care
  • Care closer to home in a more convenient setting
  • Easier access for patients through self-referral
  • Retention of patients in primary care where possible
  • Reduction in antibiotic prescribing

Download the document Primary Eye Care (Heart of West Midlands) Ltd Solihull Services Service Pack for more information regarding MECS or see documentation page including Q&A presentation 

 

Wet AMD
 
Wet AMD referals to HEFT use fax number 0121 424 4464 for direct fax to Solihull hospital. 
Waiting times are currently 4 weeks. (April 2016)
 
The Wet AMD coordinator Dan can be contacted by phone: 0121 424 4612

 

The Practice (October 2014)

The Practice has recently been awarded the contract for Solihull’s Community Ophthalmology Service for the next three years.
 
Direct referrals can be made 
  • Safe haven fax line – 0121 203 0403
  • E-mail – thepractice.cats@nhs.net
  • Post – The Practice Ophthalmology Service, Rose House, bell lane office Village, bell lane, Little Chalfont, Amersham, Bucks, HP6 6FA
  • Referrer support line – 0121 209 0401
 Locations for the service  
  • Haslucks surgery – 287 Haslucks Green Road, Shirley, B90 2LW
  • Parkfield medical Centre – 10 Parkfield Drive, Castle Bromwich, B36 9EJ
  • Tanworth Lane Surgery – 198 Tanworth Lane, Shirley, B90 4DD

For further information see the newsletter that has recently been sent out by The Practice

 
April 2014
The below guidance has been supplied by the Heart of West Midlands Regional Optical committee with regards to the provision of community services across the area to help practices avoid confusion. It has previously been emailed out to contractors and performers who are on Solihull LOC mailing list, if you would like to be added to this list please contact us at Solihull.loc@hotmail.co.uk (Some information has been added or amended by Solihull LOC to include recent updates to the information issued by HWMROC).
 
Previously: Until the 31st March 2014 all practices across the region could offer patients a Cataract Direct Referral Enchanced Service, and in some areas an Intraocular Pressures Repeat Measures Service (IOPRM)
 
Now: From 1st April 2014 the responsibility for the operation and commissioning of optometry community services (previously enhanced services) has passed from NHS England to the Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs). Each CCG is now adopting its own approach to the future shape and operation of the community services that practices have been providing.
 
It is crucial to understand that the service provided to a patient is no longer dependant on the location of the optometric practice, but by the location of the patient’s GP.
 
Sight tests are not affected as they are commissioned nationally, but community services may only be provided to a patient if the patient’s GP belongs to a CCG which commissions a community service. We understand that this may cause both you and your patients some difficulty and inequality of service. This is at present beyond our control.
 
Solihull CCG
 
The CCG has decided to “roll over” the existing contracts for IOP repeat measures and direct referral of cataracts (with choice). Those accredited for IOPRM should continue to use the Webstar Optoserve software to submit data and automatically claim the fees. New temporary contracts are being sent out. Payment will be via the Webstar online service.
 
All practices are, of course, able to provide cataract choice, as there is no accreditation needed, and all patients should be offered a choice of provider when they are referred for cataract surgery. All claims up to the end of March should have been submitted by fax using the usual C1 form.
 
We are hoping that payment via webstar should be in place before the end of June when the next quarter payment will be due. Please ensure you keep a copy of all your C1 forms as before.
We shall let you have more details as they become available.
 
Any contractor who has not been in contact with Sarah Johnson at the CCG for a new contract to provide enhanced services should contact her as soon as possible by email at sarah.johnson35@nhs.net as without a contract you will not be paid for providing these services. 
 
If you experience any complications with these new arrangements contact Solihull.loc@hotmail.co.uk
 
The information below for other CCG’s may be of interest particularly for those who work near to their boundaries
 
Birmingham Cross City CCG and Birmingham South Central CCG
 
The CCG has decided to “roll over” the existing contracts for IOP repeat measures and direct referral of cataracts (with choice). Those accredited for IOPRM should continue to use the Webstar Optoserve software to submit data and automatically claim the fees.
 
All practices are, of course, able to provide cataract choice, as there is no accreditation needed, and all patients should be offered a choice of provider when they are referred for cataract surgery. All claims up to the end of March should have been submitted to David Brown before the end of April. No claims should be submitted to David Brown for patients seen after the 1st April.
 
Hopefully the Webstar Optopay system will be in place to deal with Cataract claims by the end of June. In the meantime continue to make the referrals by fax to the chosen provider using form C1 and retain a signed copy of form C2 in the practice for future verification and possibly CCG audit. For further information on Webstar please contact Ian Hadfield and Birmingham LOC ian.hadfield@nhs.net
 
Sandwell and West Birmingham CCG
 
IOPRM and Cataract choice have temporarily been decommissioned. This will hopefully only be while a new service is commissioned to replace these services.
 
All patients with elevated IOP should be referred to BMEC or Sandwell hospital for further investigation of their elevated pressure to be carried out under NICE guidance. Please state in your referral that you are referring simply because the CCG has decided to stop paying for repeat measures to be carried out.
 
For Sandwell optometrists referral should be made via the GP for elevated IOP, as unlike Birmingham, direct referral has not been agreed with the LOC. If Sandwell optometrists are referring to a Birmingham GP they should make a note on the referral that direct referral is not mandated for Sandwell optometrists. Birmingham optometrists should continue to directly refer to the hospital as per LOC guidance.
 
Patients requiring cataract surgery will have to be referred to their GP as it is an elective procedure and the patient will have to be offered choice. Since we are no longer paid to offer that choice the patient will have to be seen by the GP so that their choice of provider can be discussed and the GP will have to deal with the onward referral. Please ensure that you clearly state in your referral letter that the GP needs to call the patient in to discuss their choice of provider and that you are no longer able to do that because the CCG has decided to stop paying you to do it.
 
Sandwell and West Birmingham CCH are undergoing a tender process to find a suitable provider for IOPRM, Cataract referrals and PEARS, and the HWMROC provider company will be bidding to provide those services. Hopefully these services will be re-instated later this year. If you have not already done so please contact Ian Hadfield of Birmingham LOC for details of how to achieve accreditation for both PEARS and IOPRM.
 
For further information please contact Sandwell LOC pghampson@gmail.com or Birmingham LOC ian.hadfield@nhs.net
 
 Wolverhampton CCG
 
The CCG have temporarily decommissioned both the IOPRM and cataract choice services.
 
All patients with elevated IOP should be referred to the Wolverhampton Eye Departments for further investigation of their elevated pressure to be carried out under NICE guidance. Please state in your referral that you are referring simply because the CCG has decided to stop paying for repeat measures to be carried out.
 
Patients requiring cataract surgery will have to be referred to their GP as it is an elective procedure and the patient will have to be offered choice. Since we are no longer paid to offer that choice the patient will have to be seen by the GP so that their choice of provider can be discussed and the GP will have to deal with the onward referral. Please ensure that you clearly state in your referral letter that the GP needs to call the patient in to discuss their choice of provider and that you are no longer able to do that because the CCG has decided to stop paying you to do it.
 
Wolverhampton will be launching a PEARS scheme in the Summer of 2014. Those wishing to participate should contact Wolverhampton LOC with an expression of interest by the 15th May 2014. More details will be available at Wolverhampton LOC’s AGM on the 12th May 2014
 
Please contact Wolverhampton LOC for further details. wolvesloc@fsmail.net
 
Dudley CCG
 
The CCG have rolled over their existing contacts for cataract referrals so there is no change to the process. New claims and payment methods are being introduced, and it is hoped that the Webstar online service will be introduced. For now, until a payment mechanism is in place, all C1s should be retained until such time as arrangements for payments are made. All practices are encouraged to use the service.
 
Please contact Dudley LOC for more information or see the LOC website. whitestar123@hotmail.com
 
Walsall CCG
 
The CCG plan to extend the cataract direct referral service for next year with a review planned at 6 months to allow the CCG to decide future commissioning arrangements. Claims and payment methods are yet to be confirmed. All practices are encouraged to use the service.
 
Please contact Walsall LOC for further details aishajeewa@gmail.com or d.stevens2@btconnect.com