Glaucoma Australia is delighted to announce the launch of its new patient support journey. In consultation with the eye care industry Glaucoma Australia has developed a new intervention and education program designed to increase adherence and reduce vision loss.
“The tragic fact that 50% of people with glaucoma remain undiagnosed and 40% of patients do not adhere to their prescribed treatment regime needs proactive patient centred intervention and education to drive future change. Our aim is to ensure every patient diagnosed with glaucoma is actively supported by Glaucoma Australia through personalised education when they need it most” said Glaucoma Australia CEO Mrs Annie Gibbins.
Following an extensive consultation and feedback period with key allied stakeholders from optometry, ophthalmology and pharmacy, an innovative and collaborative patient support journey has been created, offering personalised education and support targeted at critical, high risk periods throughout the patient journey.
A recent trial of the new patient support journey with 200 patients has indicated where intervention and education is required most. Contact from Glaucoma Australia pre and post the patients initial ophthalmic appointment and at 5 months post diagnosis, is aimed at increasing appointment and treatment adherence rates. Strategic interventions, both by phone and email, are now targeted toward improving education and support from the point of diagnosis and throughout the patient journey.
Interestingly, new data has indicated patients need significant education and support around their personal treatment regimes, specifically eye drop application and technique, laser, MIGS, trabeculectomy and living with glaucoma(1). New patient centred support resources are being developed and are now mapped to the four specific stages of the patient journey – diagnosis, starting treatment, adherence and ongoing management.
“Glaucoma Australia is harnessing digital technology and smart electronic referral systems to promote screening for at-risk individuals, linking patients with support services and education resources. This ground breaking work should impact detection rates, patient knowledge, reduce anxiety and improve treatment participation” said Dr Simon Skalicky, Chair of Ophthalmology Committee Glaucoma Australia.
When an eye health care professional refers their patient to Glaucoma Australia as part of a collaborative care pathway Glaucoma Australia’s orthoptist educators offer phone and electronic education and support which is tailored to the individual patient diagnosis and stage in their patient journey. Alternatively, anyone who ‘joins our community’ via the Glaucoma Australia website will activate the same patient support journey. Simply visit www.glaucoma.org.au/registration
“As optometry continues to detect glaucoma in increasing numbers it becomes evermore important that we involve Glaucoma Australia in the care of these patients” said Dr Ben Ashby Chair of Optometry Committee Glaucoma Australia.
“A collaborative pathway between optometry, ophthalmology and Glaucoma Australia provides the best framework for eliminating glaucoma blindness. It is ideal to educate and support a patient from the point of their initial diagnosis as it is from here that proactive eye health awareness will save sight” said Mrs Gibbins.
If you would like FREE ongoing education and support to help manage glaucoma visit www.glaucoma.org.au/registration and tell us where you are on your glaucoma journey.
Whether you have been recently diagnosed or have been managing your glaucoma for a number of years we are here to help you.
1. Skalicky, S et al. Glaucoma Australia educational impact study: a randomised short-term clinical trial evaluating the association between glaucoma education and patient knowledge, anxiety and treatment satisfaction, 2017