Specsavers in Barry has boosted its headcount with a new appointment to manage growing demand, now that the store has reopened for routine care.
Annum Qureshi, 25, has joined the team on Holton Road after recently qualifying as an optician.
The Cardiff University graduate joined the team after training in Cwmbran, where she completed an 18-month pre-registration course.
‘Highly unusual experience’
She says: ‘Joining an opticians during the COVID-19 pandemic has been a highly unusual experience. Initially, the tests I was providing were for customers who had urgent issues that, without treatment, would have led to sight loss or worse.
‘Since we reopened for routine care, we’ve seen a surge in customers who we were unable to see during the height of the lockdown. It’s meant I’ve had to really adapt my way of working, but fortunately, the team in-store have been great and helped me along the way.’
Ms Qureshi was also one of the first opticians in Wales to complete her Eye Health Examination Wales (EHEW) remotely, due to COVID-19 restrictions, allowing her to provide more in-depth examinations that would traditionally take place at hospital.
She continues: ‘Despite the unique pressures, my time at Barry has already taught me more than a regular year could have ever done. I quickly grasped when a patient’s issue is urgent and when it is not, giving me the ability to prioritise accordingly.
‘By focusing on these cases, I have been able to spot the early warns signs of various health issues which, for some of our customers, has had a life-changing impact.’
The full breadth of optical and audiology services, including routine eye and hearing tests, contact lens consultations, frame repairs and the sale of glasses, contact lenses, hearing aids and other products, is now available at Specsavers stores in Wales.