Teleopthalmology (TOP) Program

The effect of diabetes on the eyes (Diabetic Retinopathy) is the most common cause of blindness in people under age 65 and the most common cause of new blindness in North America. It is estimated that approximately 2 million individuals in Canada (i.e. almost all people with diagnosed diabetes) have some form of diabetic retinopathy. (CDA)

The Central Local Health Integrated Network (LHIN) is partnered with Black Creek Community Health Centre to offer eye screening to those diagnosed with diabetes via Ontario Telemedicine Network (OTN).

The screening program helps improve access to important health services. It is completely optional, and you are welcome to choose to take part or not.

  • Retinopathy is a complication of diabetes that can lead to blindness if it is not caught early and treated.
  • Retinopathy is highly preventable through annual examination and retinal screenings.

Our team use an interdisciplinary model of care, working together to help clients manage their condition and improve their quality of life.

  • Administrative Assistant
  • Clinical Assistant
  • Offsite Ophthalmologist (OTN)

Who is eligible?

  • Adults with diagnosed with diabetes who have not had an eye exam that involves dilation of pupils within the past year
  • Must be refer by a physician or a Nurse Practitioner
  • Located within the Central LHIN – we will find the most convenient screening location for you. 

How it works

Telemedicine programs relying on fundus photography are widely used in Canada and internationally for the identification and triage of patients with diabetic retinopathy.

  • Digital images are capture during the appointment ;
  • Images and patient’s information are uploaded to the Teleophthalmology service;
  • A specific Ontario ophthalmologist reviews the cases and respond to referring care provider;
  • Reports will be forwarded to the referring practitioner;
  • Referring care provider coordinates any necessary follow-up care as recommended by ophthalmologist.

The ophthalmologist determines if you need to have your photographs taken again after a period of time, or if you need to travel to see an ophthalmologist in person.

  •  The Teleophthalmology system resides in a secure data centre hosted by OTN. Strong technological safeguards as well as passwords are required to access the Teleophthalmology system. No images or personal health information is ever emailed during a Teleophthalmology referral.

 

  • It is advisable that you do not drive yourself to your screening appointment, rather bring a friend or support person with you, or arrange to have someone pick you up following your appointment.

Friends and family members are welcome to attend appointments.

 

Brochures and Information Sheets:

Referral Form: 

Click here to view and download the Central LHIN Diabetes Education Program Referral Form and refer to our Retinal Screening Program.

Referrals and Appointments:

We accept referrals from Physicians, Nurse Practitioners. Other health providers may start the referral but a Physician or Nurse Practitioner must sign it before screening.    

For more information or to refer a patient, please call 416-246-2388 ext 3245