Home eye tests

Our team of mobile opticians provide a comprehensive eyecare service to those who cannot get to one of our stores unaccompanied – check if you or someone you love is eligible here or give us a call on 0800 198 1132*. You can benefit from a free NHS-funded eye test, a great selection of glasses and high standards of care – all from the comfort of your own home. 

Before the test

We’ll give you the name of your optometrist before your visit so that you know who to expect at your front door. Sometimes they might also be joined by an optical assistant. Once they arrive, they’ll decide on the best area in your home for the test to take place. They may need to move around a bit of furniture to prepare the space, but in most cases, this isn’t necessary. If you have mobility issues or are bedbound, then the test can be done wherever you are most comfortable. We have specialist equipment that means we can adapt to your environment.  

Once you’re ready, the optometrist will begin by asking you (or a family member if patients are unable to give this information) about your eye health history and any symptoms or changes you may have experienced since your last test. They’ll then set up the equipment for your test, including an electronic test chart that allows us to test your eyes in any size space.

Types of eye tests carried out at home

Your optometrist will then carry out several tests to assess your vision, as well as check the overall health of your eyes by testing for specific eye conditions.

Using a handheld tonometer, your optometrist will check the pressure in your eyes (intraocular pressure) to assess whether you might be at risk of developing glaucoma. Here, they may also conduct a visual field test to test your peripheral (wide) vision, to check for other signs of glaucoma.

Your optometrist will also conduct an examination to take a closer look inside your eyes, which may require the use of eye drops to dilate your pupil so they can view the inside of your eye more easily. This is especially useful to monitor conditions such as diabetic retinopathy, alongside a number of other eye problems.

Another important check is the way your eyes move and work together, checking this can make sure that you’re not experiencing any eye strain or double vision. They will also carry out some tests to assess your vision. Your optometrist will use a retinoscope to shine light into your eyes and check for any refractive error. This test can give us a very close reading for your prescription, without the need for you to respond. This is useful if, for instance, you or your loved one has dementia and finds it difficult to give subjective responses.

If you are able to, your optometrist might carry out further tests to help fine-tune their results. For example, they might ask you to read from a letter chart (such as a Snellen test) at a distance to check your visual acuity or ask you to wear a trial frame to test your vision with different strength lenses.

Choosing your glasses

Once your eye test is complete, the optometrist will tell you whether you need to begin wearing glasses or update your current glasses prescription. They can talk you through our range of frames and lens options and help you decide on your perfect pair of glasses, and how to benefit from any offers that may be available to you.

If you qualify for NHS funding towards the cost of glasses, you may be eligible for a free pair of glasses. In other cases, a Domiciliary Pricing Supplement of £25 usually applies in addition to the cost of your glasses. This reflects the increased costs involved with delivering a domiciliary service to customers, such as making individual visits to deliver and adjust glasses in peoples’ homes.

Take a look at our range of glasses here.

Your glasses delivery

Your new glasses will be individually made to your prescription and should be ready within 21 days. As soon as they’re ready for you, we’ll be in touch to schedule a convenient date for your delivery and fitting visit. Like with your home eye test, we’ll give you the name of your optical advisor and when they’ll be arriving.

During this visit, your glasses will be expertly fitted and adjusted to make sure they’re comfortable and that you’re happy with the fit. Your optical advisor will also do a full vision check to make sure the prescription is accurate.

Aftercare services

At the end of your visit, you will be given a local home visits number, should you need any further help in the future. If you have any concerns with your new glasses, our 100 days 'No quibble, no fuss' policy applies for at home visits the same as it would in-store. If during your test, your optician detects any symptoms that indicate a more serious condition, they may refer you to your GP or local hospital for further examination.

Choosing new frames during your home visit

Our visiting opticians carry a large selection of frames with them which is constantly being refreshed. If you have seen a frame on our website that we don’t have with us on the day of your test, we can order it and get it for you.

Typically, we deliver the glasses ourselves to ensure that the frames fit correctly, however, this has changed slightly since COVID-19. To minimise the amount of contact we have with some of the more vulnerable people we see, our opticians will take all of the necessary frame measurements in advance during the initial eye test, and then post the glasses when they’re ready.

If your frames don’t feel quite right or are rubbing or keep falling down, all you need to do is call us and we’ll come and adjust them. It doesn’t matter how many times this happens, we just want to make sure you’re happy with them.

How can a home eye exam help people living with dementia?

Home eye tests are essential for people with dementia if they are unable to visit their local optician unaccompanied. Leaving the house to visit a new environment (such as an optician’s store) can be stressful and confusing for some people with dementia — especially for one-off trips where they’ll be meeting new people and being asked a number of questions. Having a test at home means that they’ll naturally feel more comfortable, which can help the test to run smoothly and create a more pleasant experience. We’ll always encourage loved ones to be present during a home visit, as this can help to create a safe and stress-free environment. For some people, it might even be necessary to take a short break during the test, which is more easily done at home.

Eye exams for dementia patients can be tailored based on their individual needs. For instance, some people living with dementia can find it particularly difficult to explain or articulate any vision loss or symptoms they are experiencing. To simplify this, our optometrists will only ever ask questions that have a yes or no answer or don’t require a subjective response. For those who are bed-bound or have mobility issues, the examination can be done wherever they are most comfortable by making a few tweaks to the home, such as moving a piece of furniture or closing the curtains. 

If your loved one lives in a care home, we’ll speak to the care home manager or senior nursing staff before we arrive to make sure we have all the right information on any medication they are taking, as well as their hobbies. Not only can this give our optometrist a good idea of their medical history, but it also helps to make people with dementia feel more comfortable.

NHS support towards the cost of your glasses

You may be entitled to NHS support towards the cost of your glasses if you:

  • Are eligible for an NHS complex lens voucher

  • Receive Income Support

  • Receive income-based jobseeker's allowance (not contribution-based) 

  • Receive pension credit guarantee credit

  • Receive income-based employment and support allowance (not contribution)

  • Are entitled to, or named on, a valid NHS tax credit exemption certificate

  • Are named on a valid NHS certificate for full help with health costs (HC2)

Use your NHS optical voucher to get one free pair of glasses from the £15 to £50 range. If your voucher value is less than £45, we pay the difference. You can alternatively use it as part-payment towards any of our great offers too.

Our home visits customers can choose from all the great styles and offers that you would find in store including complete glasses from £15.

Do Specsavers still offer Healthcall services?

Our home visits service used to go by another name — Specsavers Healthcall. If you discovered us via another health service, website or by referral, they may have used our old Healthcall name to recommend us. 

While our name may have changed, rest assured that our eyecare at home service is just the same as before, right down to the high quality care our customers receive during home visits.

If you have any questions or queries about our home visits service, please call 0800 198 1132* to speak to our team.

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