Diabetes Eye Checks (Retinal Screening)

Diabetic retinopathy can cause permanent loss of vision.

There are often no symptoms in the early stages but as the condition progresses vision may become impaired.  Often visual loss may be sudden and without warning. 

For this reason, people with diabetes should have their eyes examined regularly by an eyecare professional every two years. Poorly controlled diabetes and pregnancy in diabetes are risk factors for developing this condition.

You family doctor/practice nurse or midwife can refer you for screening.  


Where do I go for Retinal Screening?

In Tairāwhiti this service is provided by:

OPSM Gisborne

260 Gladstone Road, (next to Pak N Save).

Phone 06 867 7176

Retinal Screening is a free service funded by Hauora Tairāwhiti.


What is retinal screening?

A diabetes eye check is different from a normal eye check for glasses. A special diabetes eye check is called retinal screening.

Photos are taken of your eyes to check the health of the retina at the back of your eyes. 

Your retinal screening check

Drops will be put into your eyes to enlarge the pupils.  Some people experience a blurring of vision after having the dilating drops.  This should only last a short while.

It is advisable not to drive while your vision is blurred.  Please bring dark glasses and/or arrange for someone to drive you home.

This appointment may take between 20 – 30 minutes


Your results

The results of the screening test will be sent to your general practice doctor who will advise you of your result.


Waiting list

There is a waiting list for these tests.  If you are unable to attend please phone OPSM Gisborne on

867 7176 to arrange another appointment at a time that will suit.


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