Royal National Institute for the Blind  » Health  »
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  • This has recently happened to my Uncle, an articulate, interesting gentleman who loved to read, watch television and had a passion for collecting stamps

    • by Sarahjh2

      all reviews
      Just imagine…at one point you have complete vision and then macular degeneration creeps up on you and you only have peripheral vision. You cant see the television, or read, in fact life is very different for you.

      This has recently happened to my Uncle, an articulate, interesting gentleman who loved to read, watch television and had a passion for collecting stamps.

      To make sure that he has all of the help that he is entitled to we have been in contact with the Royal National Institute for the Blind and they have been able to point us in the right direction.

      Whereas Uncle used to have large print library books, they are little or no use to him at all now, so we have been able to get him a subscription to `Talking books`. This is a

      collection of over 15,500 audio books that are available to those who are unable to see to read, they are delivered to your own front door. If you want the use of a specially adapted cassette player as well as the books the annual subscription will be £76. If you have a player of your own and just need the audio books then the annual subscription will be £50. So if you work it out for about £2 per week you have all the `reading matter` that you need.

      Uncle desperately wanted a hand held illuminated magnifier, to me and you, a magnifying glass! but having one of these would help him go on enjoying his stamp collecting, he knew that it wouldn’t make things perfect,but more bearable maybe.

      Another essential step was to find an appropriate telephone,

      • one with large dialling buttons, we contacted Social Services to ask advice, they were able to send someone from the RNIB around to see Uncle and to help him to choose a suitable telephone.

        But it was interesting to hear that if he had been unable to meet the costs of having a telephone installation then he would have been able to contact Directgov, who are able to help those on low incomes.

        We all sat and had a cuppa together, me ,Uncle and the RNIB representative. She told us she was an Ex Hospital Matron, recently retired but not yet ready to fully retire!

        She had a great depth of compassion, she connected with Uncle straight away, her warmth and understanding of the situation was second to none.

        I explained that Uncle had expressed a wish

        to remain independent for as long as he possibly could, his sight was failing him, but his wits were as sharp as ever!

        She understood this perfectly, the RNIB had recruited well when they gave her the position of a representative.

        We were all totally at ease, able to talk about the `touchy` things in life. Would Uncle be entitled to any different benefits? Did he need any Home Care? Would he like to try going to a Day Centre?

        All questions that I might have been reluctant to broach myself.

        Uncle was as happy as the day was long, some of his worries had been lifted from him, he knew that he had support, the RNIB representative would be calling again soon and though his eyesight was failing he had regained his sense of humour!

        That one little telephone call to the RNIB made such a difference!

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    The review was published as it's written by reviewer in December, 2008. The reviewer certified that no compensation was received from the reviewed item producer, trademark owner or any other institution, related with the item reviewed. The site is not responsible for the mistakes made. 34412530010631/k2311a124/12.4.08
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