New eye care services in Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion

Eye test

New eye care services in mid and west Wales are expected to reduce journey times for hundreds of patients.

Currently, people with the age-related degenerative eye condition, wet AMD, who live in the Hywel Dda University Health Board area, have to travel to Ammanford or Aberystwyth.

But new services will be set up in Pembrokeshire and south Ceredigion to cut journey times.

The Welsh government said it would also reduce surgery waiting times.

Wet AMD (or wet age-related macular degeneration) causes sufferers to gradually lose their central vision, making reading increasingly difficult, colours less vibrant and people's faces difficult to recognise.

Previously, people with the condition had to travel to Amman Valley or Bronglais hospitals.

'Closer to home'

But the healthboard is currently considering South Pembrokeshire or Tenby Hospitals as a base for Pembrokeshire patients and either Cardigan or Crymych Health Centres for residents in south Ceredigion.

It is hoped the news sites will be up and running within the next three to four months.

In addition, consultant ophthalmologists are also training high street optometrists to review patients whose conditions are more stable. in the community.

A spokesman for the health board said: "Not only will these services bring care closer to home for these communities, but they will be developed as one-stop-shop services, which can accommodate review and injection in the same visit in order to stop duplicate journeys when possible.

"This will also release capacity in the two main sites for other surgical work, reducing waiting times for patients requiring cataract surgery."

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