Visioncall Lab

Last week we sat down with the new Visioncall lab Manager. He gave us an insight into his job and what happens daily within the Lab.

 

 

Q. What is your role as Lab Operations Manager?

lab

‘We manufacture all our products in-house.’

‘Within my role as the Visioncall Lab Operations manager, I am responsible for staff training, staff procurement, and essentially making sure that our business runs to its best capacity. 

We manufacture all our own products in-house, which means that we can cut down on lead time, getting the patients their glasses as soon as possible, with no need to rely on outside companies to do the manufacturing.’ 

Q. What have your first few weeks been like working for Visioncall?

‘My first few weeks at Visioncall have been exhilarating because I have met many new people. Everyone here has an incredible drive, pointing in the same direction and providing excellent service for our clients and patients.

We have had a couple of minor challenges at the start; however, we have come through like an absolute breeze and moving forward, I do believe that this will, in fact, help us as we will learn from it and continue to upskill our staff.

 

Q. What does a day in the Visioncall Lab look like?

‘Well, because we have nine staff within the Lab, we all have different responsibilities. The way that it works for us is we rotate our stations every four hours. This is to help prevent job fatigue and make sure our products’ quality does not suffer.

‘The knowledge of the team is impressive.’

We have two sides to the Lab, one being surfacing. This is when we take a large piece of plastic and turn it into a small amount of plastic. The other side is the glazing side, where we then take that previously surfaced lens and cut it to the exact shape of the frame each patient has to choose, along with the parameters set out by the optician.

After this, when then undergo an in-depth, final, quality control check using the British Standard Tolerise and anything that doesn’t meet with that standards will be either rejected or reworked, and we tend to make these cases a priority so that we are not leaving our patients waiting any longer than necessary.’

The Lab

 

Q. What are the Visioncall Lab team like?

‘So, the Lab team are a great bunch, and we have so many different characters. We have two brothers that work with us, and this is a lot of fun because both bounce off one another. It is like a double act some days.

Like most labs, we have loud music playing throughout the day, but the team still works hard, and they all want to work hard. One of the main things I have noticed during my first few weeks here is that they all work for each other with the same goal in mind: to ultimately provide for and help our patients.

The knowledge that the team has is impressive. Anything that can be dreamt up for optics we have done it, and we can do it because we manufacture house, we are not tied to any one supplier.

Q. As the new Lab Operations Manager, what is your Vision for the future of the Visioncall Lab?

‘My Vision for the next four or five years is to upskill the staff to ensure that we are not impacted by the likes of delivery days, staff shortages, annual leave etc., to make sure we are all working to the same level, every day as best we can.

As I previously mentioned, we currently have nine staff members within our Lab, which brings an experience of 100 years within the optical industry, and these experiences are all from different backgrounds.

I foresee that we will no doubt double our output between now and the next four years. I accept that this may bring some challenges but, we have a wealth of knowledge within the Lab, and our systems will be changing, evolving as we go and my job is to try and make sure that we do not have any slip-ups.

We will be in the market for new machinery and in time, this will make our job a little bit easier, to help future proof further growth.

We currently manufacture around 5000 jobs per month, and this certainly will double. The staff are more than capable of handling this. However, the plan is to help them develop professionally and personally because not all days are the same in terms of demand and pressure.’ 

 

At Visioncall, we believe in better overall eye health to help our patients see better and live better. If you are a care home manager and are worried about your residents’ eye health, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team to arrange a visit from one of our optometrists. 

For the latest news and updates from Visioncall, stay posted here on our company blog and follow us on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.

Simulation Specs

Last week was National Eye Health Week, and to take part in raising awareness, some of the staff over at Visioncall went about their daily tasks in the office while wearing the Vine Simulation Specs.

The Vine Simulation Package was designed in 1984 by sight loss professionals.  The training pack of simulation specs enables you to gain a first-hand view of understanding people’s daily struggles with the most common eye conditions such as Glaucoma, Cataract and AMD (Age-related macular degeneration).

 

Glaucoma

Lewis

What Is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a common eye condition that damages the optic

nerve and can cause sight loss.

The optic nerve transmits visual information from your eye to your brain to process.

regular sight test can detect and diagnose Glaucoma, which is why it’s essential to attend your routine sight test.

What was it like for someone without Glaucoma to go about their daily task with the Simulation Specs?

‘it is like your vision is fine, and you can see clearly. However, the scope of what you can see is so small. I could only see someone’s head, and I couldn’t see anything else around it.’

‘You wouldn’t be able to see anything unless it was directly in front of you. When I was looking to me right and left, I couldn’t say a thing.’

Caitlin

Cataract

What is Cataracts?

Cataracts is an eye condition where the lens in our eyes becomes cloudy and affects how light enters the eye.

This condition forms inside the eye, rather than over it. It’s a common misconception that a cataract forms over or outside the eye.

A cataract can develop in either one or both of your eyes as part of the eye’s natural ageing.

What was it like for someone without Cataracts to go about their daily task with the Simulation Specs?

‘I can’t read anything. All I can see while looking at this sign is a circle shape and a dark coloured background.’

‘I’m going to try and move closer to see if that helps. Now I can make out that it says reduce but other than that, I am completely guessing.’

AMD (Age-related macular degeneration)

Jennifer

What Is AMD?

Age-related macular degeneration, or AMD, is one of many types of macular disease. AMD causes a blind spot in your central field of vision, and usually, it doesn’t affect peripheral vision.

Common symptoms of AMD include visual distortions, such as straight lines looking wavy.

Over time your vision can worsen, affecting your ability to do things such as read, drive and recognise faces.

What was it like for someone without AMD to go about their daily task with the Simulation Specs?

‘I am going to send an email to my colleague using the computer. I am struggling even to see my screen; the only way I can see is if I bring myself up closer.’

‘I can see underneath a little while wearing the specs, but with my central vision, I can’t see the screen at all. It is just completely dark.’

 

At Visioncall, we believe in better overall eye health to help our patients see better and live better. If you are a care home manager and are worried about your residents’ eye health, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team to arrange a visit from one of our optometrists. 

For the latest news and updates from Visioncall, stay posted here on our company blog and follow us on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.

Vision

National eye health week is here, but what does this mean?

The purpose of National Eye Health Week is to raise awareness of the different kinds of eye conditions, point out how vital regular sight tests are and encourage you to speak to your optician should you have any eye concerns. 

While anyone can develop an eye condition, some factors can increase a person’s risk of developing eye conditions, from our age to our family history as this can increase the likelihood of having an eye condition at some point in your life.

Our lifestyle can also be a risk factor, lack of exercise, bad diet, smoking and drinking have been linked to eye conditions later on in life.

You can find out more about your eye health risk using an eye health calculator. Please remember that this is only an estimate, and you should always seek professional help from your optician. 

Vision Matters have set out a week’s worth of tips and vital information to help you look after your eyes; At Visioncall, we are always looking for new ways to raise awareness. We want to help shine a light on just how essential these things are.

Here are some key points from Vision Matters

‘2 million people in the UK are living with sight loss, which is severe enough to have a significant impact on their daily lives. Half of this sight loss is avoidable.’

‘A sight test can detect early signs of conditions like glaucoma, which can be treated if found soon enough.’

‘During a sight test, other health conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure may be detected.’

‘For healthy eyes, eat well, don’t smoke and wear eye protection in bright sunlight.’

 

 

2021’s Daily themes for NEHW (Sep 20th – Sep 26th) that you can take part in to help look after you and your families vision.

Monday – How’s Your Sight Seeing?
 When was the last time you went for an eye test

Tuesday – Kids’ Eye Health 

Wednesday – How to be Screen Smart 


Thursday – Live Well, See Well – how your lifestyle can impact eye health

Friday – Why Vision Matters

Saturday – Vision and Falls

Sunday – Good Vision for Driving

 

 

Visioncall

At Visioncall, we believe in better overall eye health to help our patients see better and live better. If you are a care home manager and are worried about your residents’ eye health, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team to arrange a visit from one of our optometrists. 

For the latest news and updates from Visioncall, stay posted here on our company blog and follow us on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.

Visioncall

We have all either discussed or tried to implement a healthy diet in our lives…

especially since we live in a society filled with scrumptious westernised food served with saturated fats, salt, and sugar. How many of us go on these diets with our eyes and vision in mind? When we discuss or plan to implement healthy eating, we tend to do so with the thought of getting in shape.

Well, eating better plays an essential role in helping us look after our eyes and vision. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t treat ourselves from time to time; it is all about balance. You see, the nutrients that we gain from the right foods help us stay fit and strong, leaving us to feel better overall and this also applies to the eyes.

After all, a clean gut provides a stronger mind. While on the other hand, indulging in too many foods high in saturated fats or lacking the nutrients we need can cause gradual harm, which may creep up on us later on in life. 

 

Healthy

Nutrition, Nutrition, Nutrition

‘It is all about nutrition, nutrition, nutrition.’

Over the past 18 months, there has been a rise in the discussion of healthy eating and taken daily vitamins. Since the pandemic hit last year, people have started to look at their overall health and how their diet can help, especially those at risk. Implementing vitamins to their diet has been a big focus, and getting used to the idea of taking vitamins daily can also help prevent eye-related problems, for example;

  • lutein
  • zeaxanthin
  • vitamins A, C, and E
  • beta-carotene
  • omega-3 fatty acids    
  • Zinc

 

Now, although a bad diet is not the driving force of problems that can happen with our eyes and vision as we age, there are risks involved with a diet made up of junk food, fizzy juice, deep-fried food, etc., as such foods can cause weight gain, and this could contribute to diabetes. Diabetes can play a massive part in problems with our eyes and vision. For example, people with diabetes tend to develop cataracts at a younger age than other adults.

 

At Visioncall, we believe in better overall eye health to help our patients see better and live better. If you are a care home manager and are worried about your residents’ eye health, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team to arrange a visit from one of our optometrists. 

For the latest news and updates from Visioncall, stay posted here on our company blog and follow us on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.

Visioncall Image

The pandemic has changed virtually every aspect of our daily lives and here at Visioncall our patients are some of the most vulnerable people in our society. 

Being able to hug our loved ones again has been such a joyous occasion. But it is essential that we still work together to protect those around us. Good eyesight and good eye health remain essential for our patients, and we are committed to implementing whatever means necessary to deliver an exceptional and safe service.

As lockdown restrictions continue to ease throughout the country, we will be putting all necessary measures in place to protect those individuals who are still at risk from the ongoing impact of Covid-19.

 

Health

New Infection Control and Prevention policy.

As the pandemic hit, we introduced a host of new measures to support our teams in protecting those at risk. To start, we implemented our new Infection Control and Prevention policy outlining how we will continue to provide our service safely and how we can best avoid the spread of COVID-19.

One of the most significant changes we have made to our service is introducing full PPE when seeing individuals. Our PPE includes gloves, face shields, aprons and hand sanitiser. We also sanitise our equipment before each use to protect our patients. When our clinical team are out they will come equipped with a total supply of PPE, assessing individuals safely.

The way we manage patient safety and infection control must still include additional steps to ensure the health and well-being of our patients. As we continue to navigate the new normal, Visioncall will follow government guidelines implementing any measures necessary to protect our patients. 

At Visioncall, we believe in better overall eye health to help our patients see better and live better. If you are a care home manager and are worried about your residents’ eye health, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team to arrange a visit from one of our optometrists. 

For the latest news and updates from Visioncall, stay posted here on our company blog and follow us on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.

Eye sight health tips

We can take our eyesight for granted, and when minor issues arise, we know what to do: book an appointment for a sight test. 

But what happens when a sight test isn’t available?

For those aged 65 and over, regular eye health check-ups are an essential part of maintaining personal independence and quality of life and acting as a way of managing underlying health concerns – such as diabetes, strokes, and cancers.

While sight tests may only be available for emergencies and urgent care under current COVID-19 restrictions, that doesn’t mean your vision and eye health should suffer.

As one of the UK’s leading eye care providers in the care home sector, Visioncall wants to ensure that you’re equipped with the information you need. 

Our expert optometrists have shared their top 10 tips to help you understand the little things you can do daily to look after your eyesight for the long term.

Eat A Healthy, Balanced Diet

Eating plenty of fruit and veg is essential for a healthy body. A balanced diet packed with vitamins and minerals can help protect your eyes against conditions such as glaucoma or age-related macular degeneration.

Choose Protective Eyewear 

Wearing glasses with a built-in UV filter can help protect against cataracts developing, as even the winter sun’s rays can be harsh on the eyes.

Stop Smoking

Smoking increases your chances of developing cataracts and age-related macular degeneration, as well as many other health issues, so it’s best to quit the habit altogether.

Maintain A Healthy Weight

Maintaining a healthy weight can help protect against diabetes, which can lead to sight loss. Eating a healthy, balanced diet and trying to stay active can help you achieve this.

Let The Light In

Did you know that our eyes need three times as much light aged 60 as they did at 20? Keep your home bright and light by keeping the curtains open during the day and ensuring appropriate lighting. Daylight bulbs are an excellent investment to keep the house as bright as possible.

Stay Active

Regular exercise, good circulation and oxygen intake are essential for eye health, so try and stay active as much as possible and get outdoors as much as you can. Keeping windows open can also help you access plenty of fresh air during the day.

Get A Good Night’s Sleep

Sleeping is when your eyes are lubricated and cleared out, so a restful night’s sleep is essential. Aim for eight hours a night, and ensure your room is dark enough to aid a night of good, deep sleep.

Check Your Eyesight Regularly

Checking your eyesight individually – or ‘monocularly’ – is an excellent way of comparing the vision in both eyes. Cover each eye in turn with the palm of your hand and pay attention to the level of detail you can see in each eye. Many people don’t notice that sight in one eye has deteriorated significantly, as your ‘good eye’ compensates for it.

Take Screen Breaks

Try and keep your screens at eye level and around 40cm from your face, and every five minutes, look away from your screen and blink a few times. Follow the 20x20x20 rule, too; every 20 minutes, take 20 seconds away from your screen and focus on something 20 feet away.

Check Your Prescription Regularly

If you wear glasses or lenses, check that you’ve got the correct prescription to prevent eye strain.

We hope these tips will help you maintain excellent eye health, but if you have any concerns about your eye health or sight levels, always consult an optometrist.

We hope these tips will help you maintain great eye health, but if you do have any concerns about your eye health or sight levels, always consult an optometrist.

For the latest news and updates from Visioncall, stay posted here on our company blog and follow us on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.

Thanking Carers

At Visioncall we want to say thank you to the thousands of care staff who are working tirelessly around the clock to provide essential care for the most vulnerable in our society. 

We want to show our appreciation for everyone who works so hard to keep our loved ones safe during these uncertain times.

These past few weeks have been incredibly transformative to everyone’s lives, and with considerable impact to the care industry.

As one of the UK’s leading providers of domiciliary eye care, working closely with care home partners, we understand how testing this period has been. 

Our teams across the UK are still working with care providers to assist with essential eye care services. 

Supporting you with eye care matters

Our clinical teams to remain on hand to support our care home partners with advice and guidance on eye care matters at home

While we have stopped routine visits, We understand that social distancing measures must be respected during this time to protect our patients, their carers and our staff. 

The effort we are seeing from all NHS and care staff working with those who need the most support is truly inspiring during this challenging time.

It serves as a reminder of one of our core company values – we believe the right people can make a huge difference.

So from everyone here at Visioncall, thank you. 

Thank you for making a real difference in people’s lives when it’s needed most. 

We look forward to seeing our patients safely. 

Until then, support our NHS and carers – stay home, save lives.

How To Adjust Your Glasses

Adjusting your glasses

Wearing the correct glasses can help improve vision and encourage activity.

So here are a few tips to help you adjust and care for glasses!

When to adjust nose pads

Nose pads should be flat against the nose.

Glasses should not slip down the face when nodding.

Please note, if nose pads dig into the nose, you should follow steps for if glasses are sitting too high.

We have step-by-step instructions and a visual guide below to help you safely adjust nose pads.

If glasses are sitting too low

If glasses are sitting too low, you should push the nose pads inwards.

1. Hold the glasses with your non-dominant hand.

2. Use the outside of your dominant thumb to push in on the arm of the pad gently.

3. Do this for both nose pads until the glasses fit comfortably.

If glasses are sitting too low

Push the nose pads inwards if your glasses sit too low

If glasses are sitting too high

If glasses are sitting too high, you should push the nose pads outwards.

1. Hold the glasses with your non-dominant hand.

2. Use your dominant thumb to push on the nose pad gently.

3. Do this for both nose pads until the glasses fit comfortably.

If glasses are sitting too high

Push the nose pads outwards if your glasses sit too high

How to adjust nose pads

What to do if glasses are too loose or too tight

If a frame is too loose or too tight, you should adjust the end tips of the glasses.

We have step-by-step instructions and a visual guide below to help you safely adjust the frame leg.

How to tell if a frame is loose or tight

A loose frame will slip forward when nodding or there is a lot of space behind the ear.

A tight frame will press or dig into a person’s head or ear.

Using a ruler to measure the leg of the frame can be helpful to avoid constant readjusting.

Measure the leg of the frame

Tip: measure the leg of the frame with a ruler

How to adjust the frame leg

To adjust the frame leg, you should:

1. Assess the glasses when the individual is wearing them – are they too loose or too tight?

2. Use warm running tap water or a hairdryer on low heat to warm up the end tip of the leg.

3. With your hands, straighten the leg of the frame as much as possible.

4a. If the frame is too loose, you should create a bend further down the leg towards the hinge to shorten the leg.

4b. If the frame is too tight, you should create a bend closer to the end tip of the frame to extend the leg.

5. If you used a hairdryer, wait for the frame to cool before reviewing the glasses on the individual.

Adjusting glasses using warm water

Adjusting glasses using low heat

How to fix a loose leg on a frame

If a leg of the frame is loose, you should tighten the screw in the joint.

1. Hold the glasses with your non-dominant hand.

2. Use a small flathead screwdriver to tighten the screw.

3. Close the leg and review whether it needs to be tightened more.

Clean the lenses carefully

Use a dedicated lens cleaning cloth with lens cleaning solution.

Try to avoid using paper towels or your top to clean lenses.

You should ensure that you hold the glasses by the frame, not the lenses.

As a result, you minimise the risk of inducing fine scratches on the lens.

Clean the lenses carefully

How to handle glasses

You must handle glasses with two hands when putting them on and taking them off.

You should place on hand on each leg of the frame to prevent misalignment.

Try to avoid pushing glasses back onto the head as this also causes them to misalign.

Touching the lenses can make them dirty, which may cause poor vision.

Where to store glasses

The most secure place to store glasses is in a case.

Cases can be soft or hard, but both of them should have a soft lining inside.

If you don’t have a case, place your glasses on a flat surface. Do not put them with the lenses facing down.

Avoid mixing up glasses

In your residence, there may be several pairs of glasses.

Some people may have more than one pair too!

So, to help identify glasses, all glasses produced by Visioncall feature bespoke engraving on the inside leg.

Visioncall’s engraving includes the name of the wearer, the purpose of the glasses and the date of the sight test.

For the latest news and updates from Visioncall, stay posted here on our company blog and follow us on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.

Visioncall COVID-19 statement

In light of the recent spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) cases throughout the global community, we would like to inform our partners of our COVID-19 statement.

We believe in a caring society; it’s one of our core values and has never been more important to us than during these challenging times.

Protecting our patients, some of whom are the most vulnerable adults in society, is our priority.

Following government and professional recommendations, we’ve already suspended all routine sight tests to our patients in the community.

We believe this is the right decision to protect our patients.

If we were due to visit your home, our team will contact you to postpone our visit.

Maintaining and preserving sight is still vital during this time, and we want to assure our care home partners that we are here for you throughout this period to provide critical and essential eye care services.

Our clinical teams will still be available through our triage service, offering emergency visits if appropriate.

We will also continue to provide you and your residents with a repair and replacement service throughout this period.

If you require emergency or urgent assistance, please continue to contact our customer service teams for help and advice through VC24, telephone and email.

Thank you again for your valued partnership and understanding.

You can continue to rely on our critical eye care services to help your residents see better and live better throughout this challenging time.

Please note, we will keep our COVID-19 statement up to date

For the latest news and updates from Visioncall, stay posted here on our company blog and follow us on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.

Am I At Risk Of Glaucoma?

As our glaucoma entry for our ‘in focus’ series explores the condition, we now look at whether you’re at risk of glaucoma.

Our previous blog covers what the condition is, symptoms, the different types of glaucoma and treatment.

Am I at risk of developing glaucoma?

Glaucoma is the world’s leading cause of irreversible blindness.

That’s why it’s vital to be aware of risk factors and speak to your optician as early as possible.

There are a number of risk factors for glaucoma, ranging from age and ethnicity to blood pressure.

Some of the types of glaucoma share certain risk factors, such as a family history of the condition.

That’s why if glaucoma runs in your family, your optician will monitor your eye health, and you may receive more frequent sight tests.

Did you know that it’s possible to be at risk of one type of glaucoma, but not another?

Potential v strong risk factors

It’s possible to divide some risk factors into potential and strong.

For instance, the use of corticosteroids like eye drops and inhalers are a potential risk factor for open-angle glaucoma.

On the other hand, having a thin cornea is a strong risk factor.

Either way, don’t ignore your symptoms and let your optician know.

Open-angle glaucoma risk factors

This type of glaucoma is most likely to develop in people of black-African or black-Caribbean heritage.

If you’re from these backgrounds, you’re at risk of open-angle from the age of 40.

Whereas, if you’re from any other ethnicity, you’re more at risk from the age of 60.

It’s interesting that this type of glaucoma only affects1-2% of the white population.

Angle-closure glaucoma risk factors

Angle-closure glaucoma is less common fin the UK than open-angle.

However, Eastern Asians are at greater risk of developing this form of glaucoma.

Your risk of developing angle-closure glaucoma also increases if you have an eye injury or eye surgery.

If you suffer from an eye injury, you should ring your optician and follow their advice.

Normal-tension glaucoma

Normal-tension glaucoma is an exception, as you can develop this type of glaucoma even if you have normal eye pressure.

Naturally, you can be at risk of normal-tension glaucoma and not other types of the condition.

Your risk of normal-tension also increases if you have cardiovascular disease or if you have Japanese heritage.

What to do if you’re concerned about your eye health

If you have concerns about your eyes, you should speak to your optician.

You should provide your full family history and answer all lifestyle questions honestly.

Protect your eyes

Proactive eye care is essential to keep your eyes healthy to try and reduce your chance of developing the condition.

However, practising daily eye care does not guarantee that you will avoid glaucoma.

For the latest news and updates from Visioncall, stay posted here on our company blog and follow us on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.