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What do I need to know about my appointment?

content-image2What to bring

  • Your invitation letter
  • Your usual spectacles
  • You may wish to bring sunglasses with you as the eye drops may make your eyes sensitive to light.


Arranging Transport

Please ensure you plan your transport arrangements as you should not drive away from your screening appointment. The eye drops given during the appointment will blur your vision, which may invalidate your car insurance.


To view Dorset County Council’s Community Transport Directory, please click the icon or this link


Non-emergency patient transport services is available for patients who are being transported to an NHS funded service and who are deemed medically eligible. In Dorset, this service is provided by E-Zec. For more details and to arrange transport:

Telephone: 0300 777 5555


 For other Community Transport options and phone numbers, please click the icon or this link


Dorset DESP recommend an appointment between 10am – 2pm to allow drop off and pick up times, and to advise the Patient Transport Service that an hour slot is sufficient for this appointment.  If you have an appointment over a lunchtime period, it is advisable to bring lunch / a snack and any medication that might be required.


Prior to your appointment

Please let us know (via the Booking Office) if any of the following conditions apply:

  • You had a bad reaction to the eye drops when you were last screened
  • You require a translation service or a sign language service
  • You are pregnant (as you will need to be screened more frequently)
  • You have any special requirements or constraints


What the Screener can tell me

Click to enlarge leaflet in a new browser window.


NHS_DESP_leaflet_Sept_2012-1  NHS_DESP_leaflet_Sept_2012-2


Download Information Leaflet in Different Languages

For these and other information leaflets, take a look at the Public Health England website

Download Easy Read Leaflets

Information about eye drops used

What will happen during a photography examination?

The screener will perform a basic vision test using a standard chart. They will then put drops into your eyes to make the pupils bigger (they may sting for a few seconds) you will then be asked to return to the waiting room until your pupils are fully dilated and big enough to take good photographs (10-15 minutes).

The screener will then call you back to have your images taken, typically there will be 4 images taken per screen. After details have been entered and the images have been taken you may leave, the whole procedure on average will take 30-40 minutes.

Click below to enlarge leaflet in a new browser window

The screener will hand you the above form, which details the drops provided to you at your appointment.


When you will receive your results

You will be sent a results letter as soon as images have been reviewed and graded; this is typically within a few days, some cases may take longer as more clinicians may need to review your images for quality assurance. We will state whether there is retinopathy present & whether a photographic follow up or further referral to an eye specialist is required.

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