A specialist eye clinic for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients has opened in Fitzroy as part of a partnership between the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital and the Victorian Aboriginal Health Service (VAHS).

The full-service clinic is the first of its kind in a community-controlled organisation in Australia.

It is a significant and practical step forward in closing the gap for Aboriginal patients needing specialist eye health care.

The clinic aims to address the existing and growing demand for specialist eye care among the community by providing service for both paediatric and adults patients in a culturally safe environment.

The clinic will be staffed by ophthalmologists and orthoptists, supported by Aboriginal health workers, who work as a team to target patients with eye disease.

It has state-of-the-art equipment, which allows for injection and laser treatment for serious and ongoing eye conditions.

The clinic builds on the success of the Healthy Ears clinic, another partnership between the Eye and Ear and VAHS, which provides ear care services for children.

The clinic is supported by funding from the Department of Health and Human Services.