The Lord Mayor of Birmingham experienced a sight loss simulator in Victoria Square as part of a bid to educate the public about the importance of eye health and regular eye tests.

The Lord Mayor of Birmingham, Councillor Anne Underwood, discovered more about the effects of sight loss at the Specsavers Eye Pod, which featured an interactive screen to simulate the symptoms of various common conditions.

Important to raise awareness of common conditions

‘I know first-hand the effects of sight conditions as I was diagnosed with cataracts this year,’ said Councillor Underwood. ‘It’s important to raise awareness about these common conditions which can be avoided or treated with something as simple as having an eye test.’

This comes in light of research published by Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) and Specsavers which reveals one in five people will live with sight loss in their lifetime despite at least half of all cases being avoidable.

The alarming new statistics show that in the West Midlands people are waiting until they have symptoms that inhibit their day-to-day life, before they seek help from the optician or GP. 

Providing excellent eyecare to everyone

‘It was fantastic to welcome more than 150 people into the pod during the course of the day, alongside the Lord Mayor,’ said Sat Soomal, head of Enhanced Optical Services for the West Midlands region.

‘At Specsavers, our mission is very simple: to provide excellent eyecare to everyone. Part of this is to really highlight that link between healthy eyes and eye tests. 

'Hopefully, we’ve managed to explain the benefits to those who visited us on Saturday; we will certainly continue to drive this message throughout National Eye Health Month to ensure the region has the best eyecare possible.’

A word from the store director

Birmingham store director, Neil Jones, said: ‘It’s astonishing that so many people are needlessly living with sight loss in the UK today. At least half of all sight loss cases are avoidable and a simple eye test can unearth a number of serious health conditions.'

The Eye Pod toured the country to raise awareness and funds in support of RNIB. Specsavers began a partnership with RNIB in 2016 with the mission of transforming eye health and communicating the vital importance of regular eye examinations, not just for eye sight but also to detect sight and life-threatening conditions.

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