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Other help available in the Community

Health Visitors

Health Visitors are all Registered General Nurses who have specialised in Community Health Care. They work to promote Individual, Family and Public Health. They provide a wide range of nursing services including: home visiting, accident prevention, behaviour management, continence and feeding advice. They also offer advice on family stress, welfare, and benefits. Do contact your GP and/or health visitor as soon as possible and tell them about the diagnosis. Visual impairment is very rare so they may not have much experience of children with visual impairment but they can give support and can introduce you to the local community paediatrician and Social Services. They can also help you to find more information about your child’ condition. The ophthalmologist will write to your GP giving information about the diagnosis and plans about future appointments at the hospital.

Peripatetic Teacher for the Visually Impaired (PPTVI)

The PPTVI is a qualified teacher with additional training and a special interest in children with visual impairment who will help you whatever the age of your child (from birth onwards). S/he should visit you at home and offer advice about early visual stimulation, suitable play materials and facilities available locally. S/he may also be able to introduce you to other local families who have a visually impaired child. The teacher will maintain contact during the pre-school years and beyond and help with suitable nursery and school placements. S/he will follow your child’s progress throughout school and assist with any problems that may arise. Your ophthalmologist or paediatrician should make a referral to the PPTVI after a diagnosis has been made, but otherwise, the advisory teacher can be contacted through the Special Education Needs Service of your local council’s Education Department (See your local phone book or library for details). Visual Impairment Scotland has a contact list of all the local councils should you wish to get in touch with them.

Social Services

Finding out about services and benefits can sometimes be confusing and frustrating. Contact with your local social services is important in the early stages of diagnosis so that you can have as much information as possible. Your child does not have to be registered as blind or partially sighted for you to obtain help and advice.

Visual Impairment Societies

A visual impairment society is an organisation that provides statutory and non-statutory help. This can include needs assessment, provision of equipment, advice, and information. Each visual impairment society is different; contact your local one directly to get information on the full range of services they provide.

Scottish Visual Impairment Societies Contact Details

  1. Dumfries & Galloway Association for the Blind Mount St Michael Craigs Road DUMFRIES DG1 4UT Telephone: 01387 248784
  2. Dundee Society for Visually Impaired People Thomas Herd House 10/12 Ward Road DUNDEE DD1 1LX Telephone: 01382 227101
  3. Fife Society for the Blind Fife Sensory Impairment Centre 13 Wilson Avenue Kirkcaldy FIFE KY2 5EF
  4. The Forfarshire Society for the Blind 76 High Street Arbroath ANGUS DD1 1AW Telephone: 01241 871215
  5. Glasgow & West of Scotland Society for the Blind 2 Queens Crescent GLASGOW G4 9BW Telephone: 0141 332 4632
  6. Grampian Society for the Blind 21 John Street Aberdeen AB25 1BT Telephone: 01224 625622
  7. The Highland Society for the Blind. 38/39 Ardconnel Street INVERNESS IV2 3EX Telephone: 01463 233663
  8. Perth and Kinross Society for the Blind St Paul’s Centre 14 New Row PERTH PH1 5QA Telephone: 01738 626969
  9. RNIB Edinburgh and the Lothians 12/14 Hillside Crescent EDINBURGH EH7 5DZ Telephone: 0131 557 1004