iCareTrack: measuring the appropriateness of eyecare delivery in Australia

Kam Chun Ho, Fiona Stapleton, Louise Wiles, Peter Hibbert, Andrew White, Isabelle Jalbert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: To meet the needs of an ageing population and optimise health expenditure, delivery of care should be based on evidence. However, the level of evidence-based care delivered to patients with eye conditions is rarely assessed. This study thus aimed to determine the percentage of eyecare encounters at which a sample of adult Australians received appropriate care (i.e., eyecare in line with evidence-based or consensus-based guidelines). Methods: A cross-sectional retrospective review of optometry practice records was conducted using random stratified (by state) sampling in mainland Australia. Eighty-five clinical indicators were developed from evidence-based clinical practice guideline recommendations and refined by panels of experts using a modified Delphi process. Healthcare records of patients 18 years and over were examined against these indicators, representing appropriate care for three common eye conditions (preventative eyecare, glaucoma, and diabetic eyecare). Encounters occurred in optometry practices that were selected to be representative of the socioeconomic profile of Australian practices. The primary outcome measure was percentage compliance of eyecare delivery against the clinical indicators. Results: From 426 optometry practices contacted by mail or telephone, 90 (21%) replied, 46 proved eligible and 42 were included in the study and visited for data collection. From these 1260 patient records were reviewed. Appropriate eyecare was received by Australian patients at an average of 71% (95%CI 70%, 73%) of eligible encounters. The percentage of appropriateness of eyecare at the condition level for preventative, glaucoma and diabetic eyecare was 81% (95%CI 79%, 83%), 63% (95%CI 61%, 64%), and 69% (95%CI 66%, 73%), respectively. Appropriateness of eyecare delivery was lowest for the domains of history taking and physical examination for all eye conditions. Conclusions: There were pockets of excellence but consistent delivery of appropriate eyecare needs improvement, and gaps in eyecare delivery should be addressed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)433-441
Number of pages9
JournalOphthalmic and Physiological Optics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2020
Externally publishedYes


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