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FAQs for next of kin: OutsideClinic eye tests for care home residents

Navigating the health and well-being of a loved one can be challenging, especially when they're residing in a care home.

At OutsideClinic, we prioritize transparent communication and compassionate care. We understand the importance of keeping family members informed about the services their loved ones receive.

Whether you're curious about the eye testing procedure, the expertise of our professionals, or the next steps post-examination, we've got you covered.

Why is OutsideClinic testing my family member’s eyes?

OutsideClinic collaborates with care homes to ensure that residents receive proper eye care. While it's typically advised to have an eye test every two years, some individuals may need more frequent checks due to their specific circumstances.

Does my family member need to prepare for this eye test?

Your loved one doesn't need to do anything specific. However, it's beneficial if they (or the care home staff) can have their most recent eyeglasses available during the test.

Can I attend the test with my family member?

Absolutely! We encourage family members to be present. Your insights into their ocular history and preferences are valuable. Moreover, you can help in choosing the right frames and making the experience enjoyable for your loved one.

How long will the test take?

The duration varies as each patient is unique. Our flexible schedule at OutsideClinic ensures that we allocate enough time to cater to each individual's needs, always prioritizing their comfort.

Will the eye test cause any discomfort?

The eye test itself is pain-free. In some cases, we may dilate the pupils for a clearer view of the back of the eye. This might cause brief discomfort, but it subsides quickly. We always explain each step to the patient and care staff, ensuring everyone is informed and at ease.

What will happen if you detect other health issues like diabetes or high blood pressure?

Should we detect any health issues, our dedicated professional services team will guide the next steps, whether it's a referral to a GP or hospital.

This team also handles any administrative tasks, enabling our optometrists to focus solely on patient care.

Is OutsideClinic equipped to handle patients with dementia or Alzheimer's during these eye tests?

Yes, as part of our bespoke induction programme, our Optometrists here at OutsideClinic are given specific training on Understanding Dementia, The Mental Capacity Act and Safeguarding.

This training equips our Optometrists with the knowledge and expertise to provide exceptional care for individuals with dementia during their eye tests.

It means that our Optometrists can effectively communicate, adapt the testing process, and provide the necessary support to make the experience as comfortable and accommodating as possible.

Is it possible for my family member's vision to improve, or can we only manage a decline?

Absolutely. We're equipped to identify any changes in vision, even if the patient can’t easily communicate with us.

We check for various conditions, including glaucoma, cataracts, macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and provide timely interventions to preserve and enhance their quality of life.

Will you let me know the results of the eye test?

Of course. We'll keep you updated about the findings and any recommended solutions.

Can my family member's current medication affect the results of the vision test or their overall eye health?

It can. We'll consider all medications as part of the test, working closely with the care home to understand any potential side effects, ensuring a comprehensive care approach.

If my family member needs glasses, can you help with choosing the right pair?

Yes – a dedicated optical assistant will be there (as well as the Optometrist) to help select the right glasses for the patient. We have a huge selection of frames to chose from.

If there are any serious concerns that arise during the exam, how will you communicate those with us, and what will be the next steps?

We thoroughly discuss any significant findings with the care home post-test. If needed, we'll also communicate with families and guide the next steps, including referrals.

Will there be a follow-up appointment or review after this initial examination?

If new glasses are required, we'll coordinate their delivery. Otherwise, we'll see your loved one for their next scheduled test. Remember, we're always available for any concerns or questions you might have in between visits.

Who can I contact if I have any questions after the test?

You can reach out to the care home for immediate queries or call us directly at 0800 915 6260. We're here to help!

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