Blind and Visually Impaired People
There are over one million people registered as blind or partially sighted in the UK. There are a further 700,000 people who have a sight problem which makes reading standard print difficult. It is estimated that less than 5% of registered blind people are totally without sight.
For everyone else who has some residual vision, there may be aids or techniques to help them make the most of the sight they have, an example of this might be someone with a central vision loss learning to use the peripheral vision.
Sight loss is caused by a huge variety of different conditions, some of the most common are Glaucoma, Macular Degeneration, Diabetes, Cataracts and Retinitis Pigmentosa.
There are many resources in and around Staffordshire to help with travel, entertainment, leisure, training and employment.
"Staffordshire County Council is not responsible for an of the content of external websites linked from this page."
The Royal National Institute for the Blind|| (RNIB) is a useful resources for more information and support
The Disability Services Team
We have specialist workers to look at your needs and how your needs may be met, for both adults and children with hearing loss, sight loss or physical disability.
can be made to work out the best services to enable you to live more independently and safely within your own home. We can then develop a care plan which lists the kind of support to best meet your needs.
The team operates a prioritised waiting list. This is so those in the greatest need are visited first to be assessed. If there is likely to be a delay you will be notified in writing.
Occupational Therapists/Occupational Therapy Assistants will help you if you are physically disabled. Providing information, arranging for the provision of specialist equipment. Advice on disabled facility grants, building alterations and the purchase of equipment. (Direct Payments for equipment)
Rehabilitation Officers are trained specialists who help people cope with the practical problems posed by loss of sight.
This could include getting about safely, both indoors and outdoors, increasing confidence in the kitchen, for example, or developing new skills to aid communication such as teaching Braille, Moon or touch typing skills.
The aim is to enable people to maintain or regain as much independence as is achievable.
If you feel that you are having problems because of your visual impairment, the Rehabilitation Officer may be able to help you.
Specialist Social Workers can provide assistance to ensure that the psychological, sociological and emotional needs of people with a visual impairment are fully taken into account when identifying and meeting their needs.
The social worker can provide a range of information and if required can co-work with colleagues to ensure a holistic approach.
Specialist Rehabilitation Officers and Social Workers are based with the Disability Service Teams and referrals may be made directly.
You are entitled to an assessment. This is to find out how your visual impairment is affecting your life. If you care for someone else and you need help you can ask for a social worker to come and see you. They will talk about a carers assessment.
How to contact us
Anyone can ask for an assessment or information from the Disability Services team. Contact an Area Office or, you can email us at: email@example.com||
You can also ask for a service or ask for more information online.
You may have to pay towards the cost of some of our services.
A Register of Blind and Partially Sighted persons living within its boundaries is kept by the Local Authority.
Registration is purely voluntary on the part of the sight impaired person but the Local Authority will only register someone if a Consultant Ophthalmologist has completed Form CVI.
The registration category is important, as some financial benefits are accessible to Registered Severely Sight Impaired/Blind people only.
There are many local and national travel concessions available to people who are registered blind or partially sighted.
Registered Severely Sight Impaired/Blind
To be registered as blind does not necessarily mean a total loss of sight. Nor does it mean that one day all sight will be lost. There are only a small percentage of registered blind people without any sight at all (4%).
When sight is measured, the visual acuity (sharpness and clarity of vision) and the field of vision are both taken into account. For example, a Registered Severely Sight Impaired/Blind person may have reasonably good acuity to read print but have a severely restricted field of vision causing difficulties in moving around (eg tunnel vision).
Registered Sight Impaired/Partially Sighted
This is a general term to cover those persons whose sight, though poor, is not poor enough to be Registered Severely Sight Impaired/Blind. Persons in this category are considered to be partially sighted if they have impaired vision of a substantial and permanent character.
Useful Contact Details