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Retinal Eye Exam

It is important for people with diabetes to see an eye care provider, ophthalmologist, or optometrist every year. Over time, diabetes can damage the blood vessels that nourish the retina and impact your sight.

Catching problems early and controlling your daily blood sugar can help prevent vision loss and blindness. Be sure to ask your eye care professional for a “retinal exam”. This is not part of a routine vision exam but usually can be done at the same time.

What is a diabetic retinal eye exam?

A retinal exam must be performed by an eye care professional because it requires special equipment. The eye exam that your PCP performs during routine office visits is different and does not include a retinal exam. During a retinal exam, the back of your eye is visualized with a special camera or microscope. In some cases, this exam involves adding drops to the eyes that cause your pupils to dilate so that your doctor can see into the back of your eye. If possible, it is good to have someone go to the appointment with you or arrange transportation because your vision can be blurry for a few hours after the test. However, some offices use digital imaging to photograph the retina without having to dilate your eyes. Ask your eye care professional about the options available or contact UMHA for assistance in finding a participating eye care provider that meets your needs.

Where can I go to have the retinal eye exam?

You should see an in-network ophthalmologist or optometrist for your eye exam. You do not need authorization or a referral to obtain this service from a participating eye professional.

If you need help scheduling your appointment, call Member Services at 410-779-9932 or Toll free: 1-844-386-6762, TTY: 711.

Healthy Advantage Reward: All members with diabetes are eligible for this reward. Return your completed Retinal Eye Exam Reward form to us. If you complete this test, along with an HbA1c test and Nephropathy screening, you will receive a $15 gift card.