Warrington and Halton Hospitals - Orthoptic Lead Specific Learning Difficulties Clinic

The Orthoptic Specific Learning Difficulties Clinic is a clinic run by Orthoptists to help children with eye problems related to or contributing to a specific learning difficulty. A specific learning difficulty is classed as a problem that a child in mainstream school has with their learning for example, dyslexia. An Orthoptist is an eye specialist who is trained to diagnose and to treat eye movement disorders in adults and children and to help children with poor vision. In the specific Learning Difficulties clinic, we look at other problems such as eye movements during reading and other vision related problems such as visual perception difficulties.

For example, approximately 60% of children who are struggling at school may need an overlay to help with visual distortion of print. They may have blurry vision that is not corrected with glasses and the overlay may help improve reading comfort, accuracy, speed and/or fluency.

Who to contact

Contact Name
Kathryn Whitfield
01925 662772
Warrington and Halton Hospitals Website

Where to go

Warrington and Halton Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
Orthoptic Department, Kendrick Wing
Lovely Lane

Other details


Referral required

Local Offer


The purpose of the service is to identify and correct visual difficulties that will in some way contribute to a child having a specific learning difficulty.

Our service allows a child a better access to the curriculum by correcting visual difficulties and helping to provide an equal footing with other children. An example of a good outcome would be to correct a child’s inaccurate eye movement. This would allow them to track a line of text correctly and gain greater comprehension of what was read. Another example would be to enable a child to concentrate on text for a longer period without fatigue or eye strain/discomfort thereby allowing them to keep up with their peers and/or contribute to the lesson.

Our typical activities in the clinic are visual tests looking at binocular vision, eye movement control and the way the brain ‘sees’ the written word and how we make sense of what we see.

Please see the related link to our welcome to the clinic information sheet.

Contact Name
Kathryn Whitfield
Contact Telephone
01925 662772