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Mr Steven Harsum

Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeon

QualificationsMBBS BSc FRCOphth

Main NHS base:

  • Epsom & St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust

Member of:

Fellow of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists
British and Eire Association of Vitreoretinal Surgeons
EU Retina

Clinical interests:

  • Micro incision cataract surgery and complex cataract surgery
  • Multifocal and Toric implants
  • Retinal surgery (retinal detachment, macular hole, epiretinal membrane, vitreous floaters, diabetic retinal delamination and vitreous haemorrhage)
  • Retinal vein occlusions
  • Medical retina
  • Age related acular degeneration
  • Macular oedema
  • Posterior capsular opacification (YAG laser)
  • Retinal laser

Fees, Training & Background:

Mr Steven Harsum is a substantive consultant at Epsom & St Helier University NHS Trust who is a UK trained eye surgeon. During his medical degree he was selected for the prestigious MBPhD course at University College London. This involved fast-track medical training, combined a second degree, and a three year research doctorate (PhD). His doctorate involved pioneering research into wound healing. During this time he developed his passion and skills for microsurgery. After specialising in Ophthalmology he trained in multiple hospitals in North and South London, spending the final two years at the world renowned Moorfields Eye Hospital, as a fellow in medical and surgical retina.

Since starting at Epsom & St Helier Mr Harsum wrote a successful business case to introduce microincision retinal surgery to the Eye Unit. This was the first such unit in London outside of a Teaching Hospital Environment. The vitreoretinal unit now has two full time consultants and a London deanery vitreoretinal trainee. He has recently introduced 27 gauge surgery and 3D surgery to improve the resolution, outcomes, and training.

Initially when starting at Epsom & St Helier he was the lead for the National Diabetic Eye Screening Programme for Sutton & Merton.  Subsequently, he established the first clinical commissioning group funded 3D OCT diabetic retinal surveillance clinic in London. This OCT clinic is the current model of care for London. Mr Harsum then became one of the quality assurance leads for the national programme and used to evaluate screening programmes nationally.

Mr Harsum also introduced micro-incision cataract surgery. Microincision cataract surgery is sub 2mm surgery. Compared to standard surgery, micro-incision surgery is less traumatic, faster, and safer for the patient. Surgery can be performed using only anaesthetic drops rather than an injection to numb the eye. This surgery can be combined with the latest multifocal or toric lens implants to give outstanding vision for both near and distance without the need for glasses. After standard cataract surgery, available on the NHS, you will almost always need glasses. Mr Harsum is one of only a handful of surgeons in the South East England using such small incision surgery. Whilst most cataract surgeons perform 5 to 8 cataracts on a 4 hour list, Mr Harsum regularly performs 15 operations on a 4 hour NHS list.

Mr Harsum has held a number of leadership roles whilst working at Epsom & St Helier. First he was lead of National Diabetic Eye Screening Programme for Sutton & Merton, he then became, the Lead for vitreoretinal surgery and medical retina. Mr Harsum was instrumental in starting up the intravitreal injection service for diabetic retina, macular degeneration, and retinal vein occlusions. He became a clinical and educational supervisor, College tutor, then clinical lead of the Ophthalmology department. The department is now one of the best performing departments in London and meets all 18 week standards, and has dedicated failsafe for every service. Mr Harsum has been the Director of Head, Neck, and Ophthalmology Service at Epsom & St Helier.

Nationally Mr Harsum is an external assessor for the Royal College of Ophthalmologists and sits on Consultant Appointment Panels. Since COVID-19 Mr Harsum has become the lead for Cataract Surgery for London as part of the COVID recovery programme, responsible for setting up high volume low complexity cataract surgery Hubs. He has written a surgical efficiency application that trusts can use to monitor their performance.

Mr Harsum regularly undertakes charity Ophthalmology trips. He has been to British Guyana once and Myanmar six times, each year taking a different group of consultants, to teach and perform cataract and retinal surgery.

Mr Harsum is on the Specialist Register with the General Medical Council (No. 4763770).

Personal website address: