Time is of the essence for eye health. We are urging the Scottish Government to address the skyrocketing ophthalmology waiting times.

We are calling on the Scottish Government to tackle the spiralling ophthalmology waiting times as people with deteriorating eye conditions just don’t have the time to wait.  

Newly released figures from Public Health Scotland show that 36% of new outpatients had to wait over 16 weeks for ophthalmology appointments in Scotland. The figures reveal that 11,821 new outpatients waited over 16 weeks in December 2022 compared to 10,816 in September 2022. That is a rise of almost 10% in just three months. 

Craig Spalding, Chief Executive of Sight Scotland and Sight Scotland Veterans, comments: “We are calling on the Scottish Government to put a plan in place to tackle the spiralling ophthalmology waiting lists. These new figures show that thousands of patients with eye conditions are now waiting over 16 weeks. We are greatly concerned about the impact this is having mentally on people with visual impairment and the worsening of existing conditions which will occur if treatment is not received.  

“We know the NHS is under a lot of pressure, but treatment within appropriate time scales is essential for many eye conditions. Our Community and Wellbeing staff have reported many instances where our service users have told them that their sight has worsened due to the delays, with some saying it’s like their life has been placed on hold due to having to give up work.” 

Spalding adds: “People with deteriorating eye conditions just don’t have the time to wait, if ophthalmology waiting times are not improved, they face the very real prospect of permanent damage. We welcome any movement from the Scottish Government towards tackling this.” 

To find out more about the figures sourced from Public Health Scotland please visit:


Glaucoma eye

Turn to us today

If you are struggling with your sight, we can help. Get in touch with Sight Scotland today.