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I remember a thread recently about this, but wondered about the current situation. The opticians (Specsavers) are very keen for me to go in, but although my sight test is overdue (due to lockdown mainly) my sight has not particularly changed, or at least not for the legal driving requirements (long distance vision is the same).
Is it really safe?
I've been twice to my opticians. Once for a glasses check up and once for contact lenses. I wore a mask, he wore a visor. No one else there at all. Felt absolutely ok.
I can't speak for Specsavers but I work at an independent opticians and we are trying to keep things as safe as possible. We have increased appointment times to limit the amount of people in practice at any one time. All equipment is cleaned between patients and we are all in masks, visors, disposable aprons and gloves ( aprons and gloves get changed after each patient and the masks after 3 hours) we wipe down the chairs and dispensing desks after each patient as well. Any frames that are tried on get sterilised in our swanky new UV sterilising machine and are put back on display by a glove wearing member of staff. I'm sure Specsavers will be following similar procedures to keep you as safe as possible. I appreciate you don't feel your vision has changed but a large portion of a routine eye exam focuses on eye health and this is really important to check for anything from glaucoma to macular degeneration which isn't always noticeable.
I went for a check up at my independent optician recently. Optician and I both wore masks and I didn't see any other customers as they've staggered appointment times. They'd installed a perspex screen around the machine the optician uses to look in your eyes so when he had to get close to me, there was a screen between us. Don't know if that's a standard measure at lots of opticians though.
I guess it depends what you mean by "safe"! But as Mum says, as well as checking your vision, the check up can be an early warning for various health issues so it is important not to leave it too long between check ups.
Yes absolutely fine I went yesterday. There are the usual precautions mask, sanitiser, staff wear aprons and clean the equipment, limited number people in the shop so appointments are quicker, they call before the appointment to go through the questionnaire so again less waiting time when you go in. If you want to try on frames they sanitise each pair before and after. Actually a better and more efficient experience than I have had previously.
I agree with backintime, it's a quicker and more efficient process at the moment.
I went straight in for my test, came out and another staff member came straight over and asked if I'd any frames in mind. I showed them some id looked at online and they went and got those and any similar and within 5 minutes I'd picked a pair. Less choice was way better for me.
I then collected them a week later
I went into Specsavers this morning. I had been shielding and my existing glasses need to be tightened; I thought I might as well have my overdue eye test!
I booked a 9am appointment so no patients had been in before me.
I wore a mask and they wore PPE.
I should have had a bit more of a look online before I went (though I had previously seen a particular frame I liked).
It seemed very safe and efficient. I think this is a good time to go,before any further concerns about bugs going round in winter.
I have been to Specsavers twice in the last fortnight - once for me, once for my child. They are very on it in terms of cleaning between patients/clients and the glasses you try on are cleaned properly before they get put back on.
Thanks too all for the reassurance. Maybe I will go...
I have just been disappointed with hospital outpatients being less safe than it should be with no-one wearing their masks properly, no cleaning etc. and worried that what it says on paper is not what happens in real life. I would expect an independent opticians to be able to keep customers safer simply because they are smaller. I doubt Specsavers can limit access to one customer at a time - there are normally probably 20-30 customers in there plus staff. And in normal times the hygiene measure that should be in place, e.g. those paper chin rests are normally all missing.
But I can see the situation will only get worse as we move into autumn/winter.
Thanks too all for the reassurance. Maybe I will go... I'm trying to get things done (boiler service, chimney swept, dental check up etc) at the moment rather than wait and find cases have gone up and I've missed the opportunity.
DH had an eye test at Specsavers a couple of weeks ago and he said it was fine, handgel as soon as he went in, and before each stage, he wore a mask and the optician wore a visor. He felt completely safe. I've got an mine at half 5 tonight, also at Specsavers, so I can let you know more after that!
You can’t expect Specsavers to have one person in the whole building. They just need to socially distance everyone. I’ve been twice since July. It was a much nicer experience than usual! I had to wait outside until my appointment time. I then had to wash my hands & wear my mask. All staff were in make & gloves. I was then ushered to a chair with a big green tick on it to say it had been cleaned. Two other people were waiting at least 2m apart from me. The optician then took me into the room, wiped the machines down with anti back & made me pop my glasses down on a tissue. Appointment was totally normal except my mask kept fogging up the machine so I had to hold my breath a couple times 🙈
After my test, I was shown to the glasses to try on. Two people in the glasses area only. Every pair I tried on had to be put into a tray & the shop workers cleaned them & put them back.
All felt very safe & clean & peaceful.
Ps. No paper on the chin rests at all, the opticians just cleaned it thoroughly which I think is much better actually!
@Bol87 - I agree, it sounds great, much better than usual! I usually find it quite stressful, so I may even prefer it this way (minus the coronavirus that has led to this situation though). Thanks for sharing your experience.
I can confirm it was completely fine at my appointment today. We live in a small town anyway, there was a mum and daughter looking at frames but I was the only other customer in there. All the staff had PPE, I was taken to a room that I was assured had been thoroughly cleaned first, to have the puffs of air into my eyes and the photos of the backs, then I had to sit and wait again and then the optician came through for me, and he said he had just cleaned the whole room down and that he was turning into a domestic goddess 😂😂 He had to sit fairly close for a lot of the test but we both had masks on and there was a machine between us. At no point did I feel unsafe. There was plenty hand sanitizer around and markings on the floor for where to stand. I'm going back tomorrow to look at frames because it was 6.10 when I got out and I couldn't face it 😂 But DH said a member of staff stands nearby with a tray that you put the frames in when you've touched them and then they get cleaned.
they have a fun system on line where you can film your face & have a virtual fitting of frames, worth checking it out
@Toothsil - good news, thank you for the update
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