A new organisation, Primary Eyecare Gloucestershire (PEG), has been awarded the contract to provide community eye health services for the county.

PEG was formed by Gloucestershire Local Optical Committee. It manages a network of established and experienced optometrists which includes both independent practices and chains such as Spec Savers and Vision Express.

The new service will help patients access the right services closer to home through community opticians, often reducing the need to wait for hospital appointments. The service also hopes to raise awareness of conditions such as glaucoma, and encourage people, particularly those who are high risk, to get their eyesight tested.

It will also give staff opportunities to develop their skills and improve relationships with hospital and other clinicians.

Services will be introduced in phases over the course of this year from May, starting with glaucoma. The second phase will introduce new cataract services, followed by specific minor eye conditions in autumn and children’s services at the end of the year.