Eye Conditions and Referrals

Eye Conditions and Referrals


Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is now the most significant cause of sight loss in the UK. Although wet AMD accounts for only 10 per cent of patients with AMD, 90 per cent of patients with significant vision loss have this form of the disease.  Estimates suggest that on average each optometrist should expect to identify 2.5 new cases of wet AMD each year.

In January 2018 NICE published a guideline on diagnosing and managing age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in adults. It aims to improve the speed at which people are diagnosed and treated to prevent loss of sight. You can access the guideline here.

The guidance below is directed to optometrists.


In 2017 NICE issued guidance on managing glaucoma in people aged 18 and over. It includes recommendations on testing and referral (case-finding) for chronic open angle glaucoma and ocular hypertension, and on effective diagnosis, treatment and reassessment to stop these conditions progressing.

Click here  to access the guidelines.

LOCSU have produced a variety of resources on the Glaucoma Repeat Readings and OHT Monitoring Pathway, and on the NICE guidance, which you can access here.

Ocular Hypertension – NICE Glaucoma Referral Letters

The links below provide access to model letters, one for patients and the other for domiciliary patient referrals to GPs.

Cataract Referrals

Clinical Reference Request

Hospitals with Eye Clinic Support

The link below lists hospitals in the UK with eye clinic support.

Injury or disease of the eye – GOC rules

The following GOC rules were made under the power of the Opticians Act 1989.

Scotland – Pachymeters


When a patient is referred to either their GP, a referral management centre or ophthalmology department, the urgency of the referral must be indicated and the patient should be informed of the details of their referral in writing.