The Trust

Diabetic Eye Screening Service

Diabetic Eye Screening Services formerly known as Diabetic Retinopathy Screening Service is a national screening programme for people with Diabetes. In Cheshire, East Cheshire NHS Trust runs the programme for the County. The service aims to screen all diabetic patients above the age of 12.

Annually every diabetic patient must undergo a digital photographic screen to check bleeding in their eyes (Retinopathy) which can lead to loss of vision if untreated.

The screening or photographic check is done in community or high street Optometrist/Opticians practices that are accredited and contracted by East Cheshire NHS Trust in the county. There are 52 such practices in the County and patients choose which Optician they need to visit for the annual screen.

Those patients who are successfully screened have their images graded (reported on) by specialists graders employed by East Cheshire NHS Trust. Patients who show signs of retinopathy are then referred for treatment to hospital. The main three hospitals are Macclesfield District Hospital, Leighton Hospital and The Countess of Chester Hospital. Some patients are referred to other hospitals depending on their choice.

Our locations

We have teams of diabetic eye screeners in 52 locations around the county. In every town/district there are a number of accredited optometrists who can carry out the screening. Patients have a choice of which accredited screener they go to for a screen. Usually patients go to their nearest accredited Optometrist. We also offer screening services for inmates at Styal Prison. 

The services we provide are:

  •          Annual Diabetic Eye Screen which is a national requirement for every diabetic patient aged over 12.          
  •          Digital Surveillance Clinics for patients who need monitoring for the progression of any retinopathy before they can be deemed fit for       treatment at hospital.
  •          Slit Lamp Bio microscopy Clinics for patients who for one reason or the other are not photographed successfully at first due to other eye pathology like cataracts etc.
  •          We also provide an administration service for patients referred by Optometrists to Hospital for Cataract, Glaucoma or Ocular Hypertension treatment when diagnosed at eye test or regular check up.


Screening Team Administration Centre Opening times

Monday - Friday: 09:00 – 17:00

The admin team process referrals, safe recalls and annual invitations for all patients and deal with all general enquires. They also process and send out all screening results to patients and their GPs

Contact: 01270 275523 or 01270 275524.



All referrals to hospital must be screen positive for diabetic retinopathy. This is determined by a team of graders who are trained to report on the pictures.

New patients are referred into the service by GPs upon being diagnosed with diabetes. The admin team processes all paperwork and each eligible patient gets invited for a screen once the GP completes their referral. The admin team is also responsible for annual patient recall and disseminating of patient results. The admin team also answers patient queries and liaises with GPs and Optometrists for the smooth running of the service


Waiting times for a screening

Depending on town generally some patients can wait for only a day to get screened. Popular practices like Boots, Specsavers depending on location have waiting times on average of two weeks.


Contact details

Diabetic Retinopathy Admin Team

East Cheshire NHS Trust

01270 275523/24



Clinical Lead for Diabetic Retinopathy

East Cheshire NHS Trust

Arun Sachdev (Consultant Ophthalmologist)