Patients risk blindness due to health insurance budget cuts: patient groups

Insulin injection (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/Kuebi = Armin Kübelbeck)Insulin injection (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/Kuebi = Armin Kübelbeck)

People with eye disorders could face blindness due to health insurance budget cuts on expensive treatments, according to interest organizations like the Eye Fund. The interest groups are referring specifically to eye injections used to treat people with retinal abnormalities, ANP reports.

The Diabetes Association Netherlands and elderly organization KBO-PCOB also warn that withholding the correct treatment because it is expensive, threatens the eyesight of thousands of people. Because health insurers want to limit the use of these expensive injections, it is becoming impossible for ophthalmologists to follow the current guidelines for treatments, according to the associations. 

The interest groups call these cuts irresponsible. "The cheaper treatments do not work for some patients, which means that more expensive drugs are the only effective treatment", Heleen Schoots of patient organization MaculaVereniging said, according to the news wire. 

Every year around 235 thousand eye injection treatments are performed on over 50 thousand people with retinal disorders in the Netherlands.