ABSTRACT NUMBER - 14

THE DIABETES RETINAL SCREENING, GRADING AND MANAGEMENT GUIDELINES FOR USE IN PACIFIC ISLAND NATIONS, 2009


Gillian Clover, Garry Brian, John Szetu

Meeting:  2010 RANZCO


SESSION INFORMATION

Date: 22 Nov 2010

Session Title: FREE PAPERS

Session Time: 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Purpose:
To develop and implement Pacific Guide-lines that will ensure consistent services for eye care across the region for persons with diabetes, enable comparison of data and performance, and permit stan-dardized training of a new workforce to undertake diabetic retinopathy screening and management, safely shifting a substantial workload away from ophthalmologists.

Methods:
The Diabetes Working Group of The Fred Hollows Foundation New Zealand drafted Pacific Guidelines based on the New Zealand Ministry of Health’s National Diabetes Retinal Screening, Grading System and Referral Guidelines (2006). Pacific Island-based ophthalmologists and ophthalmic nurses contributed by commenting on draft documents. CDs and illustrative posters of retinopathy grades and standard photographic images were developed for in-clinic use.

Results:
In 2010 the Pacific Eye Institute initiated a certificate course in diabetic retinopathy for nurses and health professionals. Three Pacific Island nations enrolled participants in the inaugural course. This facilitated the introduction of the Guidelines into Pacific Island practice, helping to establish consistency of care, expected standards and quality outcomes.

Conclusion:
The Pacific Island Guidelines have been launched and are being implemented. PacEyes will formally review them every 3 years. The Guidelines stipulate standards and quality, standardize diabetes eye care, and enable nurses and other health profes-sionals who acquire the necessary qualification to undertake a valuable and well defined role in the screening and management of diabetic retinopathy in the Pacific Islands.

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