The Patient Perspective on Access to Sight-Saving-Eye-Injections

This expert procedure, titled: “The Patientperspective on Access to Sight-Saving Eye-Injections for Macula Disorders” called for insurers, hospitals, eye clinics and the government to ensure that patients receive adequate access to the more expensive eye-injections when that has been indicated by doctors.

Every year about 50.000 people with macula disorders in the Netherlands are treated with 235.000 treatments of eye-injections. This expert procedure was initiated following the alarming signals that health insurers restrict the use of the more expensive eye-injections during negotiations with hospitals and eye-clinics. Due to this, eye doctors can impossibly follow the current guidelines. Patient organizations worry whether patients are being treated well. This development brings a lot of damage to the trust that patients should be able to have in the Dutch healthcare system. Furthermore, the more expensive eye-injections are part of the basic insurance package, therefore, premium-paying patients have a right for these medicines.

Undertreatment has many personal and societal consequences: blindness, social blindness, loss of independence, job loss, high costs for guidance tools, rehabilitation and nursing home care. The limitations imposed will be even more because the number of patients needing the resources is increasing considerably as a result of the growth of the amount of older people and the number of people with diabetes.

This report presents the broad patient perspective to the outlined issues and illustrates the patient-related aspects of eye care of macula disorders.