A new screening programme to prevent diabetics becoming blind was launched at a Staffordshire hospital yesterday.
The county-wide initiative, the first of its kind in the country, will benefit more than 30,000 people who suffer from diabetes.
Eight primary care trusts (PCTs) have joined forces to invest £425,000 and set up the scheme as part of the Department of Health's National Service Framework.
Diabetes is the most common cause of blindness within the UK's working population.
Digital retinopathy cameras, using specialist software, to capture images of the patient's eyes that can be compared over time to track changes in their condition, enabling doctors to identify any deterioration in their sight.
The scheme has already been running for three years, but went live across the county in January and since last month all patients' details will have been transferred onto an electronic database.
Malcolm Gray, clinical director of the screening programme, will unveil the equipment at Mid Staffordshire General Hospital, in Stafford.
He said: "This new screening programme will be key to preventing blindness by improving the consistency of care for people with diabetes in Staffordshire.
"To achieve a programme of this magnitude has not been easy, but this achievement has been the result of effort and dedication by many people and shows what the NHS can do."