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Help and reassurance for people facing sight loss now available

People diagnosed with a sight condition in Orkney and the northern Highlands can now receive emotional and practical support from a service run by the charity, Royal National Institute of Blind People Scotland.

It has extended the Eye Clinic Liaison Officer (ECLO) service it runs from Raigmore Hospital in Inverness with a new post to cover this area.

“To be told you are going to lose some or even all of your sight can be devastating news,” says Maeve Lawler, the new ECLO worker in post.

“They worry about their loss of independence, the impact it will have on their life and the people around them. But we can give people the help they need to find their lives again.”

Maeve can provide support in a wide range of ways including referring to other local and national services, advise on what aids and adjustments can make life easier, help with retaining a job, access benefits advice, and provide information and support for family, friends and carers.

“People can go through a whole range of emotions — shock, denial, anger, fear and grief,” says Maeve.

“We help patients talk through their concerns. When the person is ready we can give advice on how to lessen the impact their eye condition may have on them.

“What works best in reassuring people can be just listening, discussing their concerns and advice on how to help maintain their independence.”

Maeve Lawler can be contacted on 07525910153 or by email at maeve.lawler@rnib.org.uk

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