An undercover Which? investigation into the quality of eye examinations has found that almost half of opticians investigated were not up to scratch – but the expert panel didn’t find one unsatisfactory appointment at any of the independent practices visited.
The Which? expert panel encountered some examples of great practice too, including one visit to an independent optometrist that was rated ‘excellent’ because of the thorough eye test, clear advice and accurate prescription.
Nick Rumney, chairman of BBR Optometry, said: “We know our clients rely on us to provide care and advice that they can trust so, while concerned at some of the findings in this report, I am pleased that independent practices such as ourselves were found to be providing a good service.
“That is why I am so proud to have worked at Hereford’s only independent optometry practice for more than 25 years as we pride ourselves on our ability to offer all patients a thorough assessment of vision and eye health using the most advanced ophthalmic technologies,” he added.
With core practice values specifically focused on patient care and eye health, BBR has developed one of the most sophisticated eye examinations across the UK, which is able to detect serious degenerative conditions like Glaucoma, Macular Degeneration, Eye Cancers and Diabetic Retinopathy and this year a Tear Clinic has also been launched to diagnose and treat ocular surface disease, also known as Dry Eye.
In true contrast to the traditional ‘eye test’ which focuses solely on vision, BBR patients benefit from eye examinations which include the use of the OPTOS Daytona for advanced retinal imaging and the Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) scanner for a thorough assessment of the layers beneath the retina.
Nick adds: “In offering all patients a thorough eye examination using advanced equipment normally found within a hospital setting, we are able to generate a very accurate picture of their eye health as well as diagnose any conditions at the earliest possible stage so suitable treatment plans can be put in place.
“We also now have three optometrists - myself, Laura Reece and Laura Nixon – qualified as Independent Prescribers with a fourth, Jessica MacIsaac currently undergoing training.
“This qualification enables optometrists to clinically assess a patient, establish a diagnosis, determine the clinical management required and prescribe medication where necessary and save unnecessary referrals to hospital.
“As a result, this dramatically improves the chances of early detection and successful treatment for any condition, particularly for those who attend eye examinations on a regular basis,” he added.
For more information about BBR’s advanced eye examinations please watch this video on our YouTube channel.