Blind and partially sighted people in postcode lottery, says coalition report

Six out of 10 blind or partially sighted people never leave the
house unaccompanied, reveals a report examining the health and
social services on offer to people with visual disabilities.

The report also found that two in three blind or partially
sighted older people are not registered with social services.

Improving Lives was produced by the Improving Lives Coalition,
which consists of the Royal National Institute for the Blind, the
National Association of Local Societies for Visually Impaired
People and 85 other national and local organisations.

The report, based on seminars with 400 blind and partially
sighted people, calls for good quality support services to be
provided by councils or voluntary agencies in every area. It also
says all those working with blind and partially sighted people
should have visual impairment awareness training.

Dan Vale, report author, said: “If you are a blind or partially
sighted the level and quality of services you receive is a postcode
lottery.” He said services for older people, people with additional
disabilities and black and ethnic minority people are often
inadequate or inappropriate.

n Improving Lives – Priorities in Health and Social Care for
Blind and Partially Sighted People, from 08457 023 152.

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