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New group to help people with macular degeneration

A NEW support group for people with macular degeneration has been launched in Shetland.

The group, which has been organised by the charity Macular Society in partnership with NHS Shetland and Shetland Islands Council, will meet on the first Wednesday of every month.

Age-related macular degeneration affects the central vision and is the most common cause of sight loss in the UK, affecting more than 600,000 people.

NHS Shetland clinical nurse advisor for elective care projects Amanda Warnock said: “Macular disease is a growing health concern in Shetland as the population ages and, until now, there has been very little support for people with the condition.

“Macular degeneration is when the central part of the retina starts to deteriorate and this is usually caused by aging. The consequence is vision loss – especially in advanced age.”

Macular Society regional manager John Furze said the group aims to provide a place where people can share experiences and gain new friendships, increasing confidence and independence at the same time. It is open to family and friends too.

The first meeting will be held on Wednesday 1 August from 2-4pm at the Islesburgh Community Centre in Lerwick.

The Shetland group is one of more than 400 across the UK.

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