Our Ophthalmology team has been at the forefront of our determined focus on resuming planned care and tackling the backlog of patients waiting to get the care they need.
Their driven, innovative and resilient efforts have cumulated in several successful ‘super clinics’ – a new creative initiative enabling the team to deliver treatment to a high volume of patients over a short period of time.
Clinical Lead for Ophthalmology Ayman Khaier explained why they introduced the super clinics: “We were thinking of ways to help us reduce the patient backlog efficiently, safely, and quickly. We felt the best way to do this, considering the circumstances, would be to refocus our resources in terms of staff, physical space, and diagnostics.
“These efforts were to allow us to manage as many patients as possible in a single cohort. Through a bit of collaboration and coordination, we were able to run clinics every day of the week, including on the weekends and twilight clinics in the evenings.”
Offering appointments at varying times of the day allows greater flexibility for our patients, many of whom may be unable to attend an appointment during a weekday due to various reasons such as work or childcare commitments.
Watch this short video link of Ayman explaining his team’s remarkable efforts
Ayman said: “We made sure essential services, such as our eye casualty, were not affected. Testing the idea carefully, we were initially able to see 596 patients in nine days. We were very happy with this result, as compared to our average activity we would see around 450 patients in a similar period.
“The second time we were able to see 961 patients – an outstanding success and one I am very grateful to all the Ophthalmology team for, from the administrators and management to nurses and consultants. We put an emphasis on patient experience and engagement, and I think that really shone through.”
But the team didn’t stop there. Ayman added: “In June, we also did a super week for paediatric ophthalmology, and treated 326 children in eight days, which is five times the usual average.
“We’re also planning to do a super clinic for cataract patients, as we know we have many patients who are waiting to have surgery.”
The team’s remarkable efforts mean that patients who were of high clinical need or had been waiting for a long time could be targeted to be offered an appointment. Ayman said: “We ensured all patients were contacted by phone, because of this, and the flexibility we offered, there was a low level of non-attendance which is good for both patients and us.”
Since the resuming of planned care, the Ophthalmology team has successfully managed to consistently keep their waiting time, from listing to surgery, to less than two months. Their target is to maintain this standard.