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Visual impairment

Norfolk County Council Community Services have a team of qualified workers who, through the assessment process, can offer a range of advice, training and information concerning low vision and sight loss to minimise risk and promote independence.

People are eligible for this service after a Consultant Ophthalmologist has issued a Certificate of Vision Impairment (CVI). The Sensory Support Unit assessment will identify the person's ability to manage their care needs, mobility and orientation and communication requirements.

People can also be referred when their visual impairment is causing substantial problems around their capacity to walk safely and/or risk of injuries in the home environment.

Around three quarters of lost vision results from the eye conditions macular degeneration, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy. It is also believed that 90,000 elderly people fall and will be admitted to hospital as a result of poor vision.

The Sensory Support Worker can assist the visually impaired person, families and/or carers to understand the effects of the visual impairment and, by providing training and advice, may minimise or eliminate the need for ongoing services.

For further information on seeking assistance from the Sensory Support Unit or finding out more about visual impairment use the links on this page or contact us:

Voice: 0344 800 8020 
Textphone: 0344 800 8011 
Fax: 0344 800 8012

Or contact Norfolk County Council.

Vision Norfolk - formerly the Norfolk and Norwich Association for the Blind (NNAB) provides specialist care and help both in the community and within residential home and sheltered housing accommodation.

Registering a sight impairment

If your sight deteriorates and you no longer have eyesight at a level you feel is functional, even with prescription glasses, you could request a referral from your GP to the ophthalmology department.

This would mean booking an appointment with your GP and discussing your difficulties; they will then refer you to the eye clinic where you will be seen by a specialist team.

If your eyesight is at a certain level the Consultant Ophthalmologist may issue a Certificate of Vision Impairment (CVI) which you will have to sign.

Once this CVI has been issued a copy will be sent to you, your GP, and to the Sensory Support Unit; the ophthalmology department also keep a copy on your hospital records.

When the CVI is received in the Sensory Support Unit you will be contacted by a sensory support worker to discuss your registration options.

If you move to Norfolk from another county you are advised to contact the Sensory Support Unit to arrange re-registration with Norfolk County Council.

The Sensory Support Unit is the only team that undertakes statutory registrations on behalf of Norfolk County Council.

You can contact us for further information on:

Voice: 0344 800 8020 
Textphone: 0344 800 8011 
Fax: 0344 800 8012
Text: 07767 647670

Or contact Norfolk County Council.

Read the guide to Services for People with Sight Loss (PDF) [450KB]