A service for people suffering with eye problems is now available in the Telford area. Funded by the NHS, the Primary Eyecare Assessment and Referral Service (PEARS), enables customers experiencing acute eye conditions to book assessments in practices for a variety of eye problems. With PEARS qualified optometrists, customers are able to choose a convenient time that suits them at a number of accredited practices in the area to allow convenient access to care in the local community.
The story of one customer in particular shows just how beneficial PEARS can be. Sue Halford, 71, visited Specsavers in Telford with a bloodshot eye. During her appointment, Vinay Najran, store director and lead optometrist, carried out an anterior eye assessment and other ocular health check to diagnose a small bleed to the eye which can stem from coughing fits, high blood pressure and from lifting heavy objects.
Sue was advised to get her blood pressure checked and later found out that it was very high. Now on a controlled dose of medication to reduce her blood pressure, Sue is thankful to Specsavers in Telford for identifying this health issue.
‘I’ve never had high blood pressure before. I eat healthily and exercise regularly so if it wasn’t for Vinay suggesting I check it – I wouldn’t have known,’ said Sue. ‘The team were very helpful and friendly, and I have recommended Specsavers to my husband after my experience in store.’
‘This is a very valuable service for people in the local community,’ said Vinay. ‘GPs tend to be under great pressure these days and PEARS enables us to take some of the strain away by providing assessments in store, saving customers a visit to their GP.
‘Many of the conditions we see in store can be managed quite easily, but if the condition is more serious, like our recent case with Sue, we make a referral to a suitable specialist immediately or offer our advice. We encourage everyone to have their sight tested at least once every two years, even if they aren’t showing symptoms.’