Age related macular degeneration – Adult

Emergency and immediate referrals

Referral to Emergency

  • Nil

Immediate referral

  • Nil
Presenting symptoms
  • New onset of reduced central vision and / or distortion due to neovascular (wet) age-related macular degeneration (AMD)
  • Sudden drop in central vision or worsening distortion
  • Significant progression of dry AMD
    • NB: Dry AMD is not routinely seen unless practitioner is concerned about recent significant progression
  • Acute onset distortion
Mandatory referral information (referral will be returned if this information is not included)
  • Best corrected visual acuity (BCVA) - vision with most recent distance spectacles
  • Details and duration of treatments
  • Most recent optometrist or private ophthalmologist report including:
    • Visual acuity
    • Refraction
    • Retinal examination
    • Impact of symptoms
  • If unable to attach reports please include relevant information/findings in the referral
  • Referrer to state reason if not able to include in referral

Note: This information is required to triage accurately, within a clinically suitable timeframe.

Highly desirable referral information
  • Other relevant optometrist or ophthalmologist reports/results if available and where providing it will not delay care:
    • Optical coherence tomography (OCT)
Indicative triage category
Indicative triage category
Cat 1
Appointment within 30 days
  • New onset of reduced central vision and/or distortion due to wet AMD
  • Referral to continue treatment of wet AMD
Cat 2
Appointment within 90 days
  • Significant progression of dry AMD
Cat 3
Appointment within 365 days
  • No category 3 criteria
Excluded ophthalmology services

Referral to public ophthalmology outpatient services is not routinely accepted for the following conditions:

Condition Details (where applicable)
Dry age-related macular degeneration Unless practitioner is concerned about progression to wet AMD
Useful Information for referring practitioners

More information