South Tyneside Healthpathways

Care navigation site for Health professionals for South Tyneside patients.

Community Optometry Assessment

Log-in information is available from the member’s area of our website.  Once logged in ‘click’ on the home picture in the top LH corner to take you to the main page. From there, it’s possible to search for services such as smoking cessation, falls support, low vision support, etc.

Fall Prevention

New resources on Vision impairment and Falls from the National Falls Prevention Coordination Group (NFPCG)

The National Falls Prevention Coordination Group, (hosted by National Healthcare Public Health in NHSEI) has developed a suite of new resources to help reduce the incidence of falls related to vision impairment in older people. The aim is to promote the importance of good eye health and vision with Healthcare professionals and increase the uptake of eye examinations by the public. The resources include a ‘how to’ video to support the use of the Royal College of Physicians Bedside Vision tool for hospital inpatients and the care sector, posters for waiting areas and letters/ information sheets for healthcare professionals, and guidance from the College of Optometrists on The importance of vision in preventing falls. 

Posters for Opticians and other Healthcare professionals HERE

This poster can be printed and placed in a waiting area to raise awareness about falls prevention in older clients. It directs people to talk to the eye care professional if they have had a fall, so that vision can be assessed in light of this (with particular reference to contrast sensitivity, depth perception, visual field, cataracts and visual acuity) and a discussion about how local falls services may be able to help with other risk factors and offer potential solutions

Letter for Healthcare professionals and Optometrists / Eye care professionals HERE

A brief letter for Healthcare professionals and Opticians from the NFPCG detailing two simple things they can do to support customers or patients with visual impairment who might be at risk of a fall. It also covers the main areas of vision impairment that might lead to an increased risk and how to find the local falls services to direct customers or patients to if they want more support to reduce their risk of falls in the future.

The importance of vision in preventing falls (a report from the College of Optometrists 2020) HERE

Living with Low Vision and Sight Loss

Local Sight Loss support charities can be found HERE

Patients with reduced vision can be referred to the Low Vision Clinic (SEI/RVI or Gateshead Community (Optometrist Led)- Vision and Hearing Support)

If a new patient requires completion of a Certificate of Visual Impairment (CVI) to be registered as sight impaired/severely sight impaired it must state on the referral that an Ophthalmologist review is needed. Registration cannot be completed if the patient has not been seen by the Ophthalmologist.

If a patient does not meet the requirement for CVI registration but is still having difficulty with their vision they may still be referred to the clinic and access all the services on offer.

What’s an ECLO?

Based in hospital eye clinics, Eye Clinic Liaison Officers (ECLOs) offer practical and emotional support to people living with a sight condition, their families and carers.  The ECLO can provide advice on a range of matters, including:

  • Living with an eye condition or sight loss
  • Education, employment, housing and leisure
  • Eye conditions and treatment information
  • Maintaining independence
  • Details of latest aids, equipment and technology
  • Benefits and concessions that patients could be entitled to
  • Emotional support
  • The advantages of certification and registration.

A patient’s eye care journey is individual and unpredictable.  The ECLO is available with an offer of support through times of change providing early intervention, maximising potential to reduce long-term care needs and addressing the issues of emotional well-being and quality of life.

Please use the email below to refer people for support.

Royal Victoria Infirmary Newcastle Hospitals@Cramlington ECLOs:            0191 2820221


Sunderland Eye Infirmary & Durham Diagnostic and Treatment Centre ECLOs:              0191 5699915


James Cook & The Friarage ECLO:          01642 850850 ext 52065


Durham & Darlington ECLO:        07740501158

The RNIB also has a national  ‘Waiting Well’ Single Point of Access which is an alternative avenue to access support

This link explains what is available HERE 


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