SpaMedica hospital will offer NHS cataract surgery to patients across the region – with over 12,000 Derbyshire residents estimated to live with cataracts

People across Derbyshire will benefit from fast, high quality and personalised NHS eye care, thanks to a brand new, state-of-the-art eye hospital now open in Chesterfield.

The SpaMedica clinic, which can be found just outside the town centre on Spire Walk, Derby Road, specialises in NHS cataract surgery and will reduce waiting times for local patients to just four to eight weeks from referral, compared to a national target of 18 weeks.

The new hospital has already created a variety of clinical, administrative and operational jobs for the local community, and will help to meet rising demand for treating the sight-stealing condition, with the number of people living with sight loss expected to increase by 20% by 2032.

SpaMedica’s Chesterfield clinic is the second within the county. SpaMedica Derby opened its doors in 2020 and has received consistent five-star NHS patient reviews.

One of these is from Robin Smith, who had his surgery last month. He described the team as “extremely efficient and friendly” and said that they “couldn’t have been more helpful from arriving through to leaving.”

Another Derby patient, Patricia Shearing, praised the staff and said: “(This was) my first cataract procedure and I can honestly say it was completely painless. (I) could not be happier with the service and will have no qualms returning for my second cataract.”

Around 21% of the Derbyshire population is aged over 65 – some 223,000 residents. With approximately 30% of over 65s believed to live with a cataract that impairs their vision, up to 67,000 people in Derbyshire could be affected.

SpaMedica is one of the leading providers of NHS eye patient services and the largest NHS cataract surgery provider in the UK. Since 2008, it has successfully treated thousands of NHS patients, and has over 18,000 five-star reviews on the NHS website.

Hospital manager Kirsty Hardy said: “We have a fantastic new facility in Chesterfield and can’t wait to help patients from across Derbyshire get back to doing the hobbies and activities they love – like reading and driving – as soon as possible.

“We know that cataracts can have a major impact on people’s ability to live life to its fullest, so working in partnership with the NHS to reduce waiting times for surgery means a lot to us.

Many people in England don’t realise that they have the right to choose where they have their cataract treatment. All they need to do is ask their optician or GP to refer them to their hospital of choice.

“Our Chesterfield hospital is easy to get to by car or public transport – and we offer a free door-to-door transport service for patients if they need it, too.”

Cataracts Symptoms

You may experience one or more of the following symptoms if you have cataracts:
• Blurred vision
• Difficulty driving at night
• Difficulty watching television and reading
• Being dazzled by sunlight and/or bright lights such as the headlights of an oncoming car
• Fading of colours
• Frequent changes to your spectacle or contact lens prescription

It’s best to see an optician if you think you have cataracts. They will perform a thorough eye check and will be able to refer you for treatment if needed. In England, patients can choose which provider they have cataract surgery with.

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