Community Based Ophthalmology Service
Service Quality Performance Report

April 2022 – March 2023


This NHS service is led by Dr Ross Kelly, GP with special interest in ophthalmology (GPwSI). He is supported by Dr Ganga Nair (GPwSI) and Sister Joy Kerr, ophthalmology nurse specialist.

The service is provided from Spencer House and Arnside House Surgery in Carlisle (moved to Carlisle Healthcare South in January 2023) and Workington Community Hospital, and is available to book via Choose and Book following a referral from the patient’s GP surgery or optometrist.

All our referrals are triaged to make sure they are appropriate for the service, and if rejected, we provide guidance as to which is the most appropriate service to refer on to.

29 referrals were rejected this year. Minor ops need an accompanying PAT (prior approval ticket) or IFR approval before they are accepted for surgery. 

Patients are advised they can phone in for advice following their consultation. GPs also phone for advice on a variety of problems which helps cut down on the number of referrals.

There will always be some patients who come to the GPwSI ophthalmology service and need onward referral to the hospital eye service; however these are minimal and based on complications found during the GPwSI consultation.  One of the strengths of the GPwSI service is its ability to provide an alternative service for patients which removes the burden from secondary care and provides a self-contained treatment pathway within the community setting.

Waiting times

The average waiting time from referral to assessment is 6 weeks. All patients in this reporting period were assessed and treated within 18 weeks of referral.


The Ophthalmology service has seen a total of 3,015 patients in this reporting period.

The Ophthalmology service had a total of 138 DNAs during this reporting period.

Ophthalmology Outcomes

During this reporting period a total of 177 patients were referred to the Hospital Eye Service (HES) with the remaining either being discharged or having further care with Cumbria Medical Services arranged:

 We have access to OCT scanning in both east and west clinics and are able to manage the majority of post op macular oedema in the community.  

Patient Satisfaction

A percentage of patients are provided with a link to Survey Monkey where they can complete a patient survey. It questions them on a range of subjects including the booking arrangements, clinic facilities, doctor and nurse manner, and overall satisfaction.

Patients are also given the opportunity to feedback on ‘iwantgreatcare’ and via our website .

365 questionnaires have been returned to date for this reporting period. Based on the Friends and Family Test the following patients would recommend CMS:

100% of patients felt they were treated with courtesy throughout their appointment by administration staff and health professionals.

100% felt they were involved as much as they wanted to be in decisions about their care and treatment.

Patient comments included

  • ‘I was late because my satnav sent me the wrong way but the nurse was very sympathetic and helpful and gave me the right direction. When I got there everyone was very helpful and supportive’
  • ‘Both assistant and consultant were very efficient and friendly, and fed back comments on the eyesight and retinal tests comprehensively, beyond what I’ve experienced previously (which was already very good). I’m very grateful to have received such excellent service’
  • ‘Everything was very professional, l felt at ease, and very confident in Dr Nair’s treatment’
  • ‘Lynda was very caring explained all procedures. Ross Kelly very informative, no feeling of being rushed for next patient. Very interesting too. Everything explained in fine detail ‘
  • ‘It was an absolute pleasure from the lovely premises to the treatment I received from the staff’
  • ‘Would be useful to have instructions of what to do when you first enter the building and clearer instructions for which service option you have to choose on the electronic board’
  • ‘I cannot fault the care given by Sister Kerr’
  • ‘Doctors Kelly had a lot of time for me didn’t feel rushed thank you dr Kelly’
  • ‘The whole process is very well managed and efficient. I am very happy with the service and my treatment’
  • ‘Lovely modern new building, Staff very polite and helpful’
  • ‘Everyone involved was friendly, understanding and helpful. It was a pleasant experience’
  • ‘First class service by all concerned in the ophthalmology department. I am very grateful to the DR’s, Nurses and the all staff who have given me care, treatment and surgery since 2006. I am very proud of the Ophthalmology Service provided by North Cumbria Integrated Care in Carlisle. Many thanks from a grateful patient.’
  • ‘Very professional people Very satisfied with my treatment’
  • ‘Very informative, nurse and Dr extremely helpful, a wonderful service, thank you’
  • ‘Service superb could not ask for better’
  • ‘The only issue I would have is that it took longer than I expected to get an appointment. However Dr Kelly and the nurse I saw were excellent’
  • ‘Very polite and extremely efficient’
  • ‘Very grateful thank u’
  • ‘I feel I’m being well looked after. Respectful, questions answered clearly, efficient and friendly. Communication from the service is very clear, both by letter and reminder text. Kept well informed’
  • ‘Efficient, friendly and approachable. Thanks’
  • ‘I was very well treated’
  • ‘The treatment and the service was very good, very little waiting time, conditions and findings fully explained’
  • ‘My only concern was the time delay between my eye problem Being identified by an optician and seeing a clinician. I live in Carlisle but went to West Cumbria as there was an earlier appointment- not exactly ‘treatment closer to home’ once in the service – all excellent’
  • ‘Although there was a power cut the staff used their experience to ensure my appointment was fulfilled with great care and consideration’
  • ‘Treated with warmth & respect’
  • ‘I’d recommend the service to anyone who needs it’
  • Faultless and a noticeably clean efficient hospital
  • ‘They were all very pleasant and friendly put you at ease’
  • ‘Very courteous staff. Very helpful and kindly. Consultant extremely pleasant, explains clearly and knowledgeable treatment to follow’
  • ‘Very professional and friendly staff throughout’
  • ‘Excellent staff very professional’
  • ‘I was seen on time by friendly courteous staff. Thank you’
  • ‘Excellent care and dedication by all staff co concerned’
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