VIScotland Where can you go from here?
In the Hospital
Enquire about these services at the hospital where your child has been diagnosed. There may be a social worker based at the hospital. Here you can obtain advice on fares to hospital, financial benefits, blind and partial sight registration and help with many other issues facing you at this stage. Most important is that you obtain information about your local Social Service Department. The hospital social worker can help you make your initial contact with the appropriate person.
In the Community
Social Services have statutory responsibilities to provide a range of services for you and your child. These services may be provided by your local visual impairment society. You can make direct contact with your local social services department. The telephone number and address can be found in the telephone directory or contact VI Scotland.
Registration as Blind or Partially Sighted (form BD1)
There is a register of blind and partially sighted people, which exists to enable your local council to plan its services. If your child is registered, it might help you if you need to claim certain benefits and concessions. It can help with obtaining specialist advice and support from social services as well as educational advice and resources from your local council Education Department. Social Services are obliged to keep a register of blind and partially sighted people. It is important to note that being registered as blind does not necessarily mean that your child is completely blind - it is just the measure of a certain level of vision. Your ophthalmologist will decide whether your child is eligible for registration and after signing the BP1 form, a copy will then be sent to you and to the Social Services. A leaflet giving full details of the benefits and concessions following registration can be obtained from Visual Impairment Scotland.