Without leaving her house, a key worker from Haverfordwest has had her fears about sight issues eased after her optician performed a virtual sight test.
Concerned about visiting the store
Karen Pickford, who works at Morrisons, was concerned about a repetitive twitch in her eye and contacted her local Specsavers store in Haverfordwest. As a key worker and mother, she was initially concerned about visiting the store as she didn’t want to put herself or others at risk.
However, independent prescribing optometrist and store director Andy Britton allayed her fears by assessing her via a video conference call and reassured her there was nothing of concern.
‘It couldn’t have been easier,’ says Mrs Pickford. ‘I called up the store and explained I had experienced a twitchy eye recently and was told about the new system and to look out for a text message. It came through immediately and after clicking the link and following the instructions, I was speaking to the optician within 30 seconds.
‘It immediately put me at ease knowing I didn’t have to go into the store and could use this virtual system instead, without putting myself or anyone else at risk.’
‘Helping to keep our community moving’
Mr Britton says: ‘Karen is one of the many key workers who is helping to keep our community moving during a time of global crisis, so it’s really important she didn’t have to worry about her sight on top of everything else. The current pandemic has changed how everyone operates on a day-to-day basis, but eye health remains a constant.
‘Karen did absolutely the right thing by giving us a call when she had noticed something different about her eyes. Some symptoms can often indicate wider health issues so it is vital that we are open for care and available to assess people appropriately when needed – whether in store, over the phone or through our new video consultation system.’
All Specsavers’ teams are classed as key workers to provide urgent and essential eye care to those who need it. This includes supporting other key workers who otherwise couldn’t work or function without their help, and people who would come to harm without care, especially where the usual hospital services and NHS facilities are being prioritised for the fight against COVID-19.