News post

OutsideClinic optometrist recognised as Covid Hero

We’re thrilled to announce that OutsideClinic optometrist Paul Ratcliffe has won the COVID Hero award at the Optician Awards 2021.

Paul, who has worked at OutsideClinic for 16 years, received the award in recognition of his efforts to keep patients and colleagues safe during the pandemic.

When the spread of COVID-19 led to the suspension of routine appointments last year, Paul was determined to do something to help keep patients and colleagues safe and enable us as a company to continue delivering gold-standard eye care to the people who needed it most.

Paul’s efforts saw him create and develop a custom Breath Shield, an innovative solution designed to protect clinicians and patients and ensure we were able to continue to deliver our vital at-home service to thousands of patients through a challenging year. It’s easy to use, lightweight, transportable, easy to clean, and doesn’t hinder panoptic use.

The device made a huge difference to our clinicians operating across the UK - and its impact didn’t stop there! OutsideClinic worked with Paul to share it more widely with other businesses in the sector, at zero cost to those companies, in order that they too could keep their patients and staff safe.

On winning the Covid Hero Award, Paul said:  “I feel honoured and proud to win this award. The pandemic created extra challenges when it came to delivering top quality care to our patients, the vast majority of whom are elderly and in the most vulnerable demographic of society. I’d like to thank OutsideClinic in helping to distribute the breath shield among the wider industry, supporting the sector in its efforts to keep patients and practitioners safe.”

“Our people are the difference when it comes to us delivering extraordinary care to thousands of patients each week - and there’s no better example of this than Paul!” “When you consider the impact that his invention has had on the industry, his achievements are nothing short of incredible. “He inspired so many of us with his relentless efforts to turn it into a reality, and our practitioners and thousands of patients have benefited as a result, making him a truly deserving winner of this new award.”

Nick Wingate, Director of Professional Services, OutsideClinic

The news of Paul’s award follows a huge surge in demand for our services, with OutsideClinic recently launching its biggest ever recruitment campaign to find optometrists all over the UK. Our existing clinicians, many of whom previously worked on the high street, tell us that domiciliary eye care is more interesting and rewarding than anything they’ve done before - so, if you’re interested in learning more about the rewards and opportunities we offer, visit

Find out more

View all