Abstract
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Abstract
Year 2021
October 2021

SHBC1261

Abstract Title
Eye care during the COVID-19 pandemic - A report on patients’ perceptions and experiences, an Asian perspective
Authors

R.LOW1, J.M.LEE2, S.S.LAI2, A.ROUSELOT3, M.AGARWAL4, R. AGRAWAL2

Institutions

MOH Holdings Pte Ltd (MOHH)1, Tan Tock Seng Hospital2, Consultorios Oftalmologicos Benisek Ascarza3, Dr Shroff’s Charity Eye Hospital4 

Background & Hypothesis

COVID-19 has resulted in the closure of healthcare services during lockdowns around the world. We aim to elucidate the perceptions of patients affected by the disruption of ophthalmological services during the pandemic.

Methods

A cross-sectional questionnaire-based survey was conducted during the re-opening of outpatient services at two tertiary eye care centres in Singapore and North India. Consecutive patients were recruited from general and specialist eye clinics in June 2020.

Results

326 patients were included in the study, 200 patients from Singapore and 126 patients from New Delhi, India.  Cataract, diabetic retinopathy, and glaucoma were amongst the most common eye conditions. 46.3% of patients had appointments cancelled. 54.6% felt that their eye condition was stable during the pandemic, 32.2% felt that COVID-19 had negatively impacted their eye disease, and 40.5% of patients were unable to access appropriate care for their eye condition. 47.2% of patients were reluctant to come to the clinic for fears of contracting COVID-19 while 42.9% of patients agreed that teleconsultation was beneficial. Patients from India appear to have been more negatively affected by the pandemic and are more receptive to teleconsultation services compared to patients from Singapore.

Discussion & Conclusion

Patients’ perceptions are integral in providing the best care possible. This study highlights patients’ perceptions on eye-care, their perceived risks, ease of access to care during the pandemic and attitudes towards telemedicine. There were heterogeneous responses amongst our patients with no clear notable majority. Hence there may be a role for more individualised healthcare strategies in the future.

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