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  • 31 Mar 2016 18:36 | Simon Labbett (Administrator)

    New Research: Improving Rehabilitation for people with Impaired Sight:-The IRIS Project

    Community-based vision rehabilitation services have the potential to have a positive impact on people’s daily life and emotional well-being. However, there is little research that is able to tell us how much these services are able to improve outcomes for people with sight loss and at what cost.

     The Social Policy Research Unit at the University of York are carrying out a study of Vision Rehabilitation Services (IRIS project), funded by the National Institute of Health Research- School for Social Care Research. The research aims to examine the effectiveness and cost effectiveness of vision rehabilitation services funded by Local Authorities in England. We have Ethical and ADASS approval to conduct the research and we are now we are now currently recruiting organizations to take part in this research. 

     If you provide a vision rehabilitation service (in-house or contracted out) and are interested to take part in this research or want more information relating to this research we would like to hear from you, please contact Parvaneh or Ann at the University of York. Email: ; telephone 01904 32 1950,

    Email, telephone 01904 32 1970

    You can also see our one page summary     York Uni SPRU Overview of the project IRIS.FINAL.docx and visit our webpage at

  • 19 Mar 2016 13:30 | Simon Labbett (Administrator)

    This may be a crucial development in the future of training for Rehabilitation Workers. With a looming crisis in workforce numbers as a number of the profession look to retire, a new generation of workers is needed. Trailblazer apprenticeships may offer the way ahead, but  it can only happen if employers express an interest now.  The attachment below sets this in context and describes the next step.  Please read and discuss with managers.

    Apprenticeship trailblazer briefing for employers (3)docx.docx

  • 10 Aug 2015 20:29 | Anonymous

    Blind Veterans UK urges better signposting for vision impaired ex-Service personnel

    Blind Veterans UK is calling for rehabilitation workers to signpost patients to relevant organisations so they can access vital sight loss support.

    The call comes after research has found that almost a quarter of those supported by national military charity Blind Veterans UK struggle with sight loss for six years or more before accessing the charity’s free support and services[1], meaning that many people are unnecessarily missing out on potentially life-changing support for too long.

    Blind Veterans UK, the national charity for blind and vision impaired ex-Service men and women, has been providing vital services and support to help veteran discover life beyond sight loss for 100 years.

    93-year-old WWII veteran Jim Hooper has been given ‘an entirely new lease of life’ since starting to receive support from Blind Veterans UK. In 2012, Jim was diagnosed with age-related macular degeneration which has robbed him of his sight, along with his independence.

    In 2013 Jim contacted Blind Veterans UK for support: “Blind Veterans UK has helped me regain my independence. It has given me an entirely new lease of life. The support from all of the people at the Brighton centre has been just brilliant - the IT instructors, the ROVIs, the carers, all of the staff. I can't speak highly enough of them - they're very, very supportive.

    "I've been given a computer to use at home, and I've learnt how to touch type. I'm competent at sending and receiving emails, I use the computer to write letters and documents and other such things. Blind Veterans UK has given me a talking watch and a talking clock. They've also given me a CD player which I can listen to talking books on, I've listened to at least a dozen books and novels now.”

    Blind Veterans UK offers free, lifelong support to blind and vision impaired ex-Service men and women, no matter how or when they lost their sight. Services and support are provided through the charity’s three centres in Brighton, Sheffield and Llandudno, North Wales.

    Blind Veterans UK want rehabilitation workers to ask the blind and vision impaired people they work with if they have ever served in the Armed Forces or done National Service, and if they have, to refer them by visiting or calling 0800 389 7979. Alternatively, request an information pack by emailing

    [1] January 2015 postal survey of Blind Veterans UK beneficiaries conducted by Clarient Research. 24% of 1,235 respondents who answered this question.

  • 17 Apr 2015 16:27 | Anonymous

    Visual impairment officers have a critical role to play in helping councils meet their Care Act duties but their numbers are being cut, says Simon Labbett.... read fuller article here

  • 18 Feb 2015 16:05 | Anonymous

    Transport for London has named 18 areas across London as ‘zero tolerance’ for A-boards, following a successful pilot in three areas.

    TfL have stated that ‘prosecution will remain the last resort and TfL will continue with the current practice using the statutory process in the 2003 Act of issuing removal notices, after which the ‘A’ Boards are removed and kept until the business owners pay a fee and retrieve their ‘A’ Board.’

    Advertising boards, or A-boards, are an everyday bane for disabled people. Cory Sharp, a visually impaired member who lives in Whitechapel, said:

    “They’re a nightmare. You have to go round them, and the whole time you’re worrying that they’re going to send you into the road, or veering into something else. I manage it somehow, but I’ve come close to tripping over. Hopefully, the expansion of zero-tolerance for A-boards means that disabled people will find it easier to get our destination without obstacles in the way.“

    Read the full article here:

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Press Release: Second Sight  - Argus II Bionic Eye

Second Sight Argus press release.docx

click on the link to read

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