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Coffee morning for patients suffering with macular degeneration is a great success

November 29 2019

On the 18th October, a Care UK mobile unit in Preston hosted a group forum for patients who have been treated with macular degeneration at Care UK’s North West Macular Service. This was a great chance for our patients to talk to each other over tea, coffee and cake about their condition and how it has affected their day-to-day life.

North West Macular Service provides treatment for macular conditions across the North West of England. The service is the highest performing in the UK, and are the only provider to achieve clinical trial outcomes at CCG-scale.

The service specialises in Wet AMD (age-related macular degeneration), this is caused by an abnormal blood vessel growing into the macula area, which is responsible for central vision. Fortunately, the condition can be treated with regular injections to stop the growth of abnormal vessels and stabilise vision.

Macular degeneration can be very worrying for a patient, as without immediate surgery your eye sight can get considerably worse, making it hard to do everyday tasks such as reading or recognising people’s faces. The exact cause for the condition is unknown but has been linked to smoking, high blood pressure, being overweight and having a family history of the condition.

At the event, the group was devised of 10 patients and their significant others who were personally invited to share their experiences and give their feedback of the service. The event was run by eight Care UK specialists who listened to their past patient’s experiences and provided advice on living with the condition.

At the Preston unit they believe in acting fast once a patient has been diagnosed, as the sooner the patient is seen to, the faster they will recover. The team aim to treat every patient within 48 – 72 hours of being diagnosed with macular degeneration.

The event was a great success and the service received fantastic feedback from patients who had been treated at the Preston unit, including, “We were treated as individuals and with respect”. The team are aiming to carry on doing this event every six months to help other patients and to receive more feedback.

Lynn Ford, Clinical Lead said: “We become more than nurses to our patients, we become their best friends, we become their home from home. They are happy that we’re there for them through a difficult time and that they are not just treated as a number.”

This event was created as part of our ‘Always Events’ programme which focuses on “all aspects of patient and family experiences that should always occur when they are interacting with a healthcare professional”. The program has been rolled-out company-wide at Care UK to provide our patients with the best possible care.