First steps KC/DALK in UK

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Daz_31
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First steps KC/DALK in UK

Postby Daz_31 » Thu 25 Jul 2013 3:11 pm

Hi there.
My name is Darius I am Polish living UK since 2004 but don't know much about NHS system due I never need it. Got GP :)
Asking because I had done LE corneal graft 6th May 2013 in Praha, and need same on the right eye.
Back UK few weeks ago, and don't know where I should go to find out more about corneal transplant in UK, where I should go in emergency if something going wrong with my LE. Don't know how Your system works here,. I was working hard whole my life until January. Now I am not employed. Did I still entitle for NHS non pay health care? Can I go to optician and non pay for visit? How, where, who I should ask for help.
Don't get me wrong. I was hard working all time in UK since I came but now I cant.

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Anne Klepacz
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Re: First steps KC/DALK in UK

Postby Anne Klepacz » Sat 27 Jul 2013 7:26 pm

Hi Darius,
Anyone who has a sudden change in the eye (eg redness, pain, sudden change in vision) after a graft needs to go straight to a hospital A&E department in case it's the start of a rejection - which can usually be easily reversed provided it's caught early. Being unemployed doesn't affect your eligibility for NHS treatment. Going to an optician in the high street isn't free, but most of us go to a hospital eye clinic for our keratoconus, where the only charge is for contact lenses (and even they are cheaper than you would pay privately).
Surgeons in the UK wouldn't normally do a transplant in the second eye until all the treatment for the first eye is finished, including removal of stitches 18months or so after the graft.
All the best with LE!
Anne

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Daz_31
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Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
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Re: First steps KC/DALK in UK

Postby Daz_31 » Wed 31 Jul 2013 9:00 pm

Thanks for that.
had another thing to sort now.
So, I stopped working Christmas 2012(self employed last 2 Years), now I had LE done but is just nearly 3 months ago now, my RE need a graft in future, my vision is form me much much better then it was few months ago. However is only one eye job, cause RE cant see even what is write here.
I want work, I have enough not working but I understand I cant do lots things because of my Eyes. Dusty place, hevy weight, driving etc.
Do You think it is worth going to Jobcentre and speak with them about my KC problem?
Maybe they advise how to find something to do?
Or maybe go there and don't say nothing about KC? But what if they offer me job where perfect vision is necessary?
I wish to work but there is so many health and safety rules that probably nobody employ man with fresh graft and advanced KC on other Eye.
Did they report DVLA? Do I lose my Driving Licence? They report me as half blind?
Your helpfull advice very welcome.

longhoc
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Re: First steps KC/DALK in UK

Postby longhoc » Thu 01 Aug 2013 8:57 am

Hi again Daz

Yes, definitely speak to your Job Centre Plus advisor and ask about local employers who promote their programmes to help get people with disabilities back in to work https://www.gov.uk/looking-for-work-if-disabled There is some support available (not enough in my view but that's another story) but you have to explain your situation and ask for it.

For the DVLA and driving, it's really important that you ask you GP (see my other reply to your earlier post -- glad you got registered :-) with a GP) to confirm whether or not you're fit to drive. They will be able to either do a simple sight test in the GP's office or else refer you to a specialist if there's any doubt. If you use a high street optician, they will be able to do the same, if you prefer to use them. Hopefully you'll still be assessed as fit to drive. But if not, you must tell the DVLA and pass on to them the information you get from your GP or optician. They will make a final decision about your ability to continue driving. Motoring offences such as driving while medically disqualified can lead to deportation if you've lived in the UK for less than 10 years as you might be deemed to "present a threat to public order, public security or public health". If you've been resident for more than 10 years, deportation can only be done "in exceptional circumstances" and would be very very unlikely for this kind of thing but you can still be fined heavily. So don't take any chances, get a health professional to confirm you're alright to drive.

One final thought, in all this, though, try to keep in mind that your medical condition is not your "fault" and that you've done nothing wrong or made any mistakes. From what you've told us, you've supported yourself and your family in the UK since 2004 quite happily and with self-reliance. It's very common for people who become disabled (whether you think of yourself as being that) to start to feel guilty about their situation and somehow "imposing" on others or on society. A healthy society is one that takes care of those who need it and doesn't judge illness or bad luck. And that's what I hope we all live in !

Good luck !

Chris

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Andrew MacLean
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Re: First steps KC/DALK in UK

Postby Andrew MacLean » Thu 01 Aug 2013 10:05 am

Hi

I have always found the DVLA to be both understanding and helpful.

There is a minimum vision requirement to be able to drive: I quote here from the government's website

Standards of vision for driving
You must be able to read (with glasses or contact lenses, if necessary) a car number plate made after 1 September 2001 from 20 metres.

You must also meet the minimum eyesight standard for driving by having a visual acuity of at least decimal 0.5 (6/12) measured on the Snellen scale (with glasses or contact lenses, if necessary) using both eyes together or, if you have sight in one eye only, in that eye.

You must also have an adequate field of vision – your optician can tell you about this and do a test.

https://www.gov.uk/driving-eyesight-rules

It never does any harm to keep DVLA informed of your condition, but it could do harm not to.

Every good wish

Andrew
Andrew MacLean

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Anne Klepacz
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Re: First steps KC/DALK in UK

Postby Anne Klepacz » Thu 01 Aug 2013 11:08 am

And on the work front, it would be worth contacting your nearest Action for Blind People office. AFBP www.actionforblindpeople.org.uk is a charity that has employment advisers who can help people who are having difficulty with an existing employer and those who are looking for work. In spite of the word 'blind' in their name, they help people with varying degrees of sight loss, including people with KC
Good luck!
Anne

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Daz_31
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Keratoconus: Yes, I have KC
Vision: Graft(s) and good vision

Re: First steps KC/DALK in UK

Postby Daz_31 » Thu 01 Aug 2013 7:22 pm

Thank You all for Your support and advices.
It is really big help for someone like me who don't exactly know how all this works here in UK.
With Your help things starting be more clear and understandable.
Thank You


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