Specsavers Corporate Eyecare is already appreciating the incredible benefits of the life-saving retinal cameras it has installed in more than 580 of its stores across the UK. As the leading provider of corporate eyecare, Specsavers is keen that the benefits should be felt by all employees to safe-guard their more general health and therefore reduce health and safety risks as well as absences.
The state-of-the-art equipment will play an imperative role in the early diagnosis and prevention of many eye conditions. Using a retinal camera as part of the eye examination process helps the optician to assess the whole visual system. Keeping a record of the image also allows ongoing comparisons to be made over time. Use of the cameras can assist with the detection of:
- Inflammatory disorders
- Macular degeneration
- Vascular occlusions
Life-saving examination: case study
A 19-year-old woman’s life was saved recently when a Specsavers optician spotted the signs of a rare brain disease during a routine check-up. An examination with the retinal camera revealed that her optic nerve was out of place. She was sent straight to hospital, where doctors discovered she was suffering from idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH). The illness causes the fluid between the brain and the skull to expand and can cause blindness or even death if left untreated.
The danger for diabetics
The timing is particularly relevant with the latest Department of Health figures showing that more than half a million people in England with diabetes are still not being screened for retinopathy. This is a common complication for diabetics and can be detected using a retinal camera. If identified early enough, blindness can be prevented in 90 per cent of cases.
The employer’s role
Jim Lythgow, director of strategic alliances for Specsavers Corporate Eyecare says: ‘With around 100 people in the UK starting to go blind every day, the early detection of eye disease is vital to optimise treatment. Employers can take a lead role in improving the situation by implementing an eyecare policy for all staff. With a simple examination being able to detect so many health risks, it is well worthwhile for the employer and employee alike.’