A Blue Cross Blue Shield company in Pennsylvania has teamed up with a local ophthalmology group to offer express-service eye exams to patients with diabetes.

Highmark Inc., Pittsburgh, has launched a plan with the Pittsburgh Ophthalmology Society to offer fast appointments to individuals needing diabetic retinal eye examinations.

For people with diabetes, waiting just a few weeks for an appointment with an eye specialist can lead to further complications, such as blindness and macular edema, Highmark notes.

Under the program, around 100 POS member physicians have agreed to see patients with diabetes being referred for eye exams on a fast track–sometimes on the same day the patient receives a prescription from a primary care physician. The invitation for express appointments is open to all patients, not just Highmark members, the company says.