Professor Andrew Dick looks back over 2013-14 at the work of the Retinal Outreach, Integration and Research Health Integration Team (RENOIR HIT).
The Retinal Outreach, Integration and Research (RENOIR) HIT builds on Bristol Eye Hospital’s existing regional, national and international strengths. Bristol Eye Hospital has a national profile for the delivery of high quality and cost-effective clinical services. Expanding our services through a modernised system using outreach clinics will allow the NHS to treat more people closer to home, improving patient choice and making new drugs available via research to people who might not otherwise have access to them.
We are responding to the increase in retinal conditions, by designing and delivering optimal and cost efficient care. Our outreach programme provides equity of care in our community, to allow patients to be treated closer to their home to the same standards they’d expect from the Bristol Eye Hospital. We opened a new site at South Bristol Community Hospital in July 2013. We are scheduled to open a site in North Somerset during the summer of 2014 and another in South Gloucester in 2015.
We are also developing research and NICE guideline-informed care pathways. Initial consultation and diagnosis happens at Bristol Eye Hospital, before patients are moved into appropriate care pathways for follow-up at one of the outreach locations. We also aim to develop opportunities for access to research trials for all. We have already recruited more than 80 patients for two observational and two interventional studies.
We are also working to enhance our services through the use of modern imaging developments and IT, extending our team’s skills. We have already recruited, trained and extended the role of optometrists, technical staff and nurses, leading to more cost-effective delivery of services.