eye testTwo surveys have been launched by sight loss and disability charity SeeAbility to understand if people with learning disabilities are getting the right help to look after their eyes.

The surveys – one for parents of children under the age of 14 with learning disabilities and an easy read version for anyone aged 14 and over – were officially available from November 26, the same day the 15th annual Learning Disability Today London conference. 

SeeAbility believes this is the first initiative to gain a national picture of eye care experiences among people with learning disabilities. Both surveys can be completed online or a paper copy can be downloaded to print. The charity can also send copies to anyone who requests them and the completed surveys can be sent back for free.

“We want to make sure eye care services are the best they can be for people with learning disabilities,” said Scott Watkin, SeeAbility’s eye care and vision development officer, who has a learning disability and has had surgery on his eyes. 

“People with learning disabilities are at much greater risk of having a sight problem, but those I regularly speak to still struggle to get a sight test or glasses. 

“I know from my own experience just how difficult it can be for someone with a learning disability to get good eye care. I have had good care but I have had to fight for it.   

“We want to hear from people with learning disabilities to see what the picture is nationally and will be putting all the findings into a report that will be launched in spring next year.”

To complete the survey and find out more, go to www.seeability.org/surveys or email d.o’brien@seeability.org. The surveys are planned to stay open into the New Year.