7 December 2017
NHS Digital must be quoted as the source of these figures
Regional and Local Authority data available in this report
A report which includes the numbers of newly registered blind and partially sighted people in England during the 2016/17 financial year has been published today by NHS Digital1.
The Registered Blind and Partially Sighted People, England 2016/17 report contains aggregate information on adults and children who have registered with their local authority2.
The report includes registrations of new blindness or severe sight impairment by age group3. It also shows the total number of people who are on the register overall, as well as the number of registrations per thousand population.
Not all blind and partially sighted people are incorporated as registration to the Local Authority register is optional for people who hold a Certificate of Vision Impairment (CVI)4 from an ophthalmologist, This certification information is also captured by Moorfield's Eye Hospital.
The report has been running since 2003 and is released approximately every three years. Under Section 77 of The Care Act 2014 'a local authority must establish and maintain a register of sight-impaired and severely sight-impaired adults who are ordinarily resident in its area.'
CVI data is released as part of the Public Health Outcomes Framework5 to show the number of people certified with a visual impairment.
Read the full report
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Notes to editors
1. NHS Digital is the national information and technology partner of the health and care system. Our team of information analysis, technology and project management experts create, deliver and manage the crucial digital systems, services, products and standards upon which health and care professionals depend. During the 2016/17 financial year, NHS Digital published 292 statistical reports. Our vision is to harness the power of information and technology to make health and care better.
2. This report focuses on new registrations and also includes the total numbers registered, some councils have told us that reductions on the overall register are due to data cleansing. Previous reports have also highlighted that the overall register is not always well maintained, as people who have moved areas, or died, may still appear on a Local Authority register.
3. This report is derived from aggregate data collected from local authorities of people who have registered with them, so is not a definitive list of people with a visual impairment living in the Local Authority.
4. Latest comparable data indicates that around 92% of people with a CVI are also registered blind or partially sighted with their local authority.
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