Although on the surface dental and eye conditions may appear to have little in common, the way each service is currently provided is in fact very similar. Both services have a large community base provided by numerous small independent practices (i.e. Community Dentists or Opticians/Optometrists). These independent practices have links with General Practice and, where needed, refer more complex cases to hospital based specialists. It therefore seems logical that any change in the way care is provide for one of these areas could help guide changes in the other.
A workshop held on 12th November 2014 brought together people who use and provide dental and eye services in Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan to share their views about the future. Through better engagement with our population, better use of technology, and new ways of working, everyone at the workshop was asked to describe “what a new dental / eye service of the future could look like?”
Discussions during the workshop were captured in the form of visual minutes.
The first step in developing any new model of care is to describe a vision of what a future service should achieve. Working with Prof Ivor Chestnutt, our dental lead, and Mr Kadaba Rajkumar, our ophthalmology lead, we used the information from our workshop, together with published best practice from Wales, the UK and the wider world, to develop a Shaping Our Future Wellbeing shared vision of dental and eye care in the future.
With this vision in mind, we can now begin to explore the changes that will be needed to make the vision a reality, and so begin to describe in detail a new model for dental and eye care.