Mr Ian Biercamp, aged 71 and who is from Leeds but lives in Sweden, visited the UK last year to celebrate his daughter’s 40th birthday. Before boarding his flight to the UK, he had been having trouble with his vision, which had been mildly obscured by black spots and black, hair like, fibres.

Once he arrived in the UK, he found that he could no longer see out of his right eye.

The right choice 

Undecided about whether or not he should visit a local GP, A&E or an optician, he opted to visit the Specsavers in Wetherby, near to where his daughter lived, the day after he arrived from Sweden. He was immediately seen by Geoff Harper, the store’s Dispensing Director, who placed him with an Optometrist to identify the problem.

It became clear that Mr Biercamp needed to visit the hospital.

The nearest eye unit was St James’s Hospital in Leeds, about a 30 minute drive. Mr Biercamp was advised that he couldn’t drive because of the drops that had been administered and with the eye unit due to close at 4:30, Geoff drove him to the hospital so that he didn’t have to wait until Monday morning to be seen.

At the hospital, Mr Biercamp was diagnosed with a detached retina and was operated on at 8am the following Monday morning.

Happy ending 

The hour long operation, during which Mr Biercamp was awake, saw a bubble placed in his eye to hold his retina in place. He was then advised not to drive or fly for at least six weeks and to be able to return to Sweden, he’d need to be given the all clear.

The retired teacher was able to celebrate his daughter’s birthday and had a slightly longer than anticipated stay in the UK, however is grateful for the speed at which he was seen by Specsavers and the effort that was made to address his problem.

Not long after the operation and as advised, a cataract appeared, a sign that the eye is healing; this will require another operation.

In December 2015, Mr Biercamp returned to the UK for his Christmas visit home and paid a visit to the Specsavers store in Wetherby. The team created a bespoke pair of reading glasses so that he could continue to live life normally.

All Specsavers Wetherby store information

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