Oct 7th, 2020
The last few months have been immensely difficult for everyone, and we understand just how hard it has been for many people to stay happy, healthy and positive. Sarah, James, Kim and I are glad to be back, all be it not all at the same time!
As many of you will know that we have been open throughout the last few months apart from March 24th, when frankly I couldn’t work out what to do! During most of that time we were only seeing Emergency appointments, preventing unnecessary visits to the Eye Hospital if at all possible.
Since early June we have been able to increase the range of patients we can see so that essentially we can now see anyone who wants to get their eyes examined and prescription checked, on the proviso that we have in place appropriate measures to protect both my staff and you, our patients. We will all be wearing face masks and gloves, and Kim and I will be wearing aprons when carrying out examinations.
We are continuing a closed door and appointment only policy to help maintain social distancing and to help us control the number of people in the practice at any given time. Please call and arrange a suitable time if you wish to visit us. Please try and avoid just turning up. Much as we love to see you, currently it makes life very difficult for us, and we don’t want to send you away if we are unable to accommodate you when you turn up. We require you to have a mask on to enter the practice. When you arrive please wait at the door and we will signal when we think it’s safe for you to enter. For the most part everyone has adhered to this policy, and we are grateful to you for that. From time to time we have had people just stroll straight in. as you can imagine that makes us very nervous and we would be really grateful if you could adhere to our rules, for all our safety and peace of mind. When you enter we will ask you to use some hand sanitiser, its gloopy stuff so only a small dollop is required!
After you leave the premises surfaces are cleaned, and any spectacle frames that you may have tried on are cleaned. We are taking theses measures in line with guidance to ensure both your safety and all of us working within the practice. Please be aware that currently our toilet is for staff use only, so do what you need to do before you come to us…Sorry. But I’m sure you understand.
Currently all the eye examinations we are carrying out include Retinal imaging. It is very difficult for Kim and I to stay safe carrying out Ophthalmoscopy (the bit where we get very close to you to look inside your eye). As a result there is an additional fee to cover these additional tests which are not covered by the NHS Sight Test Fee if you are eligible for this. Again I’m sure you can understand our thinking on this.
We are prioritising appointments according to need at the moment. We have reduced the number of appointments we have each day so that we can manage the number of people in the practice at any given time. Currently we are booked two weeks ahead so please bear with us, and we will try and get you seen as soon as possible. Over the past few months we have built up a large back log of people that were due their regular routine appointments, and I will be contacting those patients in due course, but of course if you feel that your vision has changed please get in touch and we will get you booked in as soon as possible.
As you can tell appointments are at a premium, and as such I kindly request that you give us at least 24hours warning if you are unable to attend, and I reserve the right to charge for non attendance without advance warning. I understand emergencies happen, and things beyond your control can cause you to not be able to attend, but just not showing up is at best just rude.
Finally I would like to publically thank Sarah, James, Kim and you, our patients for your support. As it has been tough for us at a personal level its obviously been very tough from a business point of view. If you have been thinking of a new pair of specs now’s a great time to treat yourself! But then again, I would say that wouldn’t I.
Hopefully I’ve explained our motus operandi for the foreseeable future, but if you have any questions please drop me a line. Please bear with us through this uncharted water, we are trying to do the best we can for you and ourselves.
It’s been great to see so many of you again, we do really enjoy seeing you!
So stay safe and we look forward to seeing you sometime soon.