PurposeThis report summarises the process and outcomes from the Subsidy Reference Group follow-up of the review, and the next steps for the Ministry’s consideration.
MethodologyOn project inception, the Ministry and Litmus worked together to confirm the scope, timelines and deliverables of this programme of work. Specifically, this involved the continuation of the Subsidy Reference Group, and facilitation of specific working groups to explore the key areas and future considerations identified in the Review of the Children’s Spectacle Subsidy.
2.1 Reference Group
In December 2012, the Subsidy Review Reference Group members were invited to continue in their advisory roles under new Terms of Reference for this programme of work. The Reference Group was re-convened in February 2013, made up of members from across the vision correction and disability sectors, specifically:
- An optometrist (and member of the New Zealand Association of Optometry; NZAO)
- A paediatric ophthalmologist
- A dispensing optician
- A Vision and Hearing Technician (VHT)
- Representatives from Blind and Low Vision Education Network NZ (BLENNZ)
- Representatives from Parents of the Vision Impaired (PVI)
- Additional stakeholders were invited to join the Group where additional expert input was necessary, including the Chief Advisor for Child and Youth Health and a representative from the Resource Teacher: Learning and Behaviour (RTLB) education sector.
The primary objective of the working groups was to develop sector-endorsed recommendations (or key considerations) for the future design and delivery of the Subsidy across three workstreams: Clinical guidelines; Access pathways and awareness; and procurement approaches.
- Clinical guidelines: scoping the feasibility and development of guidelines
- Access pathways: looking at current eligibility, referral pathway and awareness factors
- Procurement approaches: exploring and modelling the cost impact of open tender procurement and preferred provider options to supply frames and lens equipment for a fixed, reduced price under the Subsidy