11:35 28 December 2016
Ten patients suffering from an inherited form of blindness will become the recipients of “bionic eyes” paid for by the NHS. The disease destroys the light-sensing cells in the retina leading to vision loss and eventually blindness. Meanwhile, the bionic eye is a retinal implant that interprets images captured by a miniature video camera worn on a pair of glasses.
Half of the patients will be treated at Manchester Royal Eye Hospital with the other half at Moorfields Eye Hospital in 2017.
Prof Paulo Stanga from Manchester hospital said: "I'm delighted,"
"It surpassed all of our expectations when we realised that one of the retinitis pigmentosa patients using the bionic eye could identify large letters for the first time in his adult life."
Dr Jonathan Fielden, from NHS England, said: "This highly innovative NHS-funded procedure shows real promise and could change lives.
"The NHS has given the world medical innovations ranging from modern cataract surgery, new vaccines and hip replacements, now once again the NHS is at the forefront of harnessing ground-breaking science for the benefit of patients in this country."
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