While Specsavers Crawley in The Martlets are closed for all routine eye and hearing tests at the moment, they are still open to provide essential care and support local key workers.

Last week, optometrist Amar saw an elderly man who had been suffering from flashing lights and floaters in his eyes for a while.

Open for urgent care

He had previously seen his doctor and the hospital who had told him to see his regular optician if his symptoms got worse – but when he tried to do so he found that they were closed.

Purely by chance, he walked past Specsavers and saw that they were open for urgent care. Amar saw him and found that he had a macular retinal detachment, so made an urgent referral.

Supporting the community

Earlier in lockdown, Amar also saw a young woman who was suffering from sudden double vision. She had been advised to go to A&E, but given the current situation decided to give Specsavers a call first.

Amar found that she had a sixth nerve palsy, a disorder caused by damage to the sixth cranial nerve. She was referred and treated quickly, and is now doing really well.

Here to help

Customers are being encouraged to call the store if they need urgent support with a visual problem, or if they have issues with their glasses, contact lenses or hearing aids.

If anyone is required to attend the store, they will be asked to do so – and key workers will be prioritised. The store is seeing people by appointment only, in line with government advice, and are following all current guidance.

A word from the store director

Kumar Keshavji, store director in Crawley, said: ‘We stayed open to provide urgent and essential care to help take the pressure off the NHS locally and to support local people at this time, and we have been honoured to do so.

‘We want the local community to know that, while we are closed for routine appointments at the present time, we are still very much here to support people with their essential eye and hearing care needs – so please give us a call if you need us.’

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