Eye health crisis set to deepen

19 Sep 2017

ONE in five people will live with sight loss in their lifetime despite at least half of all cases being avoidable, warns a new report published by charity Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) and high street opticians Specsavers. 


ONE in five people will live with sight loss in their lifetime despite at least half of all cases being avoidable[i], warns a new report published by charity Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) and high street opticians Specsavers. 

The alarming new statistics show that every day 250 people start to lose their sight in the UK. Women, who tend to live longer, are at greater risk than men, with one in four women set to develop sight loss in their lifetime compared with one in eight men[ii].

Almost six million people in the UK currently live with sight-threatening conditions yet 25 per cent of people are not having an eye test every two years[iii] as recommended by the College of Optometrists[iv]. The extent of the problem means that nearly every family in Britain is touched by sight problems in some way.

RNIB acting CEO Sally Harvey says: ‘Our report reveals new evidence that one in five people will live with sight loss in their lifetime, so our work is now more important than ever. The eye health crisis looks set to deepen and the cost burden is destined to soar unless urgent action is taken.

‘Almost 80 per cent of people living with sight loss are over the age of 64[v], so with an ageing population that is expected to retire later, more of our national workforce will be impacted by sight loss. Alongside rapidly growing demand for eye care services, and capacity problems in some clinics at a time of growing budget deficits, we are facing an extremely challenging time for eye health in the UK, and we must take action now.

‘We will continue to press for integrated services and effective referral and treatment for local communities as a key way of tackling the capacity problems in hospital eye departments. We will champion active planning that is based on the eye health needs of local communities and we will present conclusions from our policy roundtables to a parliamentary Inquiry on eye health services.’

The State Of The Nation Eye Health 2017: A Year in Review report, launched ahead of National Eye Health Week (18 – 24 September), is an annual benchmark of Britain’s eye health by RNIB and Specsavers, who joined forces in 2016 to raise awareness of the importance of eye health at every level to help prevent avoidable sight loss.

While a YouGov survey commissioned for the report suggests 1.1 million[vi] more people took action to improve their eye health by visiting an optician since the campaign launched last September, there is much still to be done, according to Specsavers founder Doug Perkins.

An optometrist for more than 50 years, he says: ‘We are calling on political leaders, senior decision makers in health and social care, and local champions to work together to ensure that people receive timely treatment to prevent avoidable sight loss.

‘Without this leadership the eye health crisis will continue to worsen and patients’ sight will be put increasingly at risk, deepening the economic burden that we already estimate will rise from £28 billion today if nothing is done now.’

TV presenter and journalist Anne Robinson is supporting this year’s campaign as eye health ambassador. Her own family experience of eye health problems saw her Irish godfather, who had a love of horse racing, lose an eye through cancer.

Anne says: ‘It was really sad - not only could he no longer watch television, but he couldn’t look up the form or do all the things he usually loved to do. This needn’t have happened as science has progressed so far that if he’d have been having regular eye tests he could have enjoyed those racing programmes until he died.’

Anne’s father also struggled with sight loss. After years of ignoring his vision problems he decided to have his eyes tested on a family trip to London. The optician discovered that he had cataracts and referred him for surgery to remove them.

Anne adds: ‘Neither of my parents went for regular eye tests. My father had been a teacher all his life until he retired so reading, as it is to all of us in our family, was terribly important. He’d missed out on reading newspapers and books. Sometimes, as you get older, you don’t admit that you’re struggling. Looking back, he clearly knew something was wrong. With the cataracts gone he could read comfortably again.

‘I now know that all of us, from the age of three, should be having our eyes tested regularly because of what an optician can detect.’

 

The report also reveals that:

 

·         Sight is the nation’s most precious sense by far; 10 times more people (78 per cent of people) said sight was the sense they fear losing most compared to the next most popular sense, smell (8 per cent), followed by hearing (7 per cent)  

·         Almost a quarter of people are ignoring the first signs of sight loss; despite not being able to see as well in the distance or close up as they used to, 23 per cent have not sought advice from an optician or medical professional

·         More than 80 per cent of people are not aware that an optician can spot the early signs of cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death in the UK

·         People put their boiler before their eye health; half of UK adults have their boiler serviced once a year, over a third renew their mobile phone contract every two years, while 50 per cent of UK adults last had their eyes tested more than a year ago or never

·         Research suggests Brits check their teeth more often than their eyes; 42 per cent  visit the dentist once every six months (equating to four times over two years) while 25 per cent  of UK adults haven’t had an eye test in the past two years or at all

·         A quarter of people who spend £50 a year on shoes would not be prepared to pay anything at all for an eye test

The report, written by RNIB and Specsavers and supplemented by an independent YouGov poll of 6,430 UK adults, was unveiled at an event hosted by the partnership in London today.

The event marks a stepping up of RNIB and Specsavers transforming eye health campaign, which will include a multi-million pound investment in marketing, nationwide fundraising and a tour of the UK with their Eye Pod simulated sight loss experience to educate the nation about the importance of eye health. A list of tour locations is available below.

[i]  The State of the Nation Eye Health 2017: A Year in Review, Specsavers/RNIB

[ii] This is primarily due to the fact that women have a greater life expectancy.

[iii] YouGov Survey commissioned by Specsavers and RNIB 23rd June -7th July 2017 of 6,430 UK adults aged 18+

[iv] The State of the Nation Eye Health 2016, Specsavers/RNIB

[v] The State of the Nation Eye Health 2016, Specsavers/RNIB

[vi] YouGov Survey commissioned by Specsavers and RNIB 23rd June -7th July 2017 of 6,430 UK adults aged 18+. Specsavers calculation based on the Office of National Statistics' 2015 and 2016 UK 18+ population estimates.  2015 population estimate for those who have been for an eye test in past year = 51339161 x 0.4567 = 23,446,594.83. 2016 population estimate for those who have been for an eye test in past year = 51767543 x 0.4750 = 24,589,582.93. 24,589,582.93 - 23,446,594.83 = 1,142,988.10



Cirrus House
10 Experian Way
NG2 1EP
Nottingham, Nottinghamshire
United Kingdom

Safety & Health Expo 2020

ExCeL, London, UK 19-21 May 2020

Reward Gateway offers Specsavers discounts to over 1.5m employees
Product News

Reward Gateway offers Specsavers discounts to over 1.5m employees

The number of employees being offered Specsavers discounts through engagement hub, Reward Gateway, has now topped 1.5 million. 

Specsavers Corporate Eyecare has been working with Reward Gateway for over four years, with Reward Gat...

Read more

Designer frames increase eyecare take-up
Product News

Designer frames increase eyecare take-up

Research revealed today by Specsavers Corporate Eyecare suggests that offering designer frames increases take-up of eyecare benefits and reflects well on the company. This may prove useful information for safety managers providing DSE eye care, safety ...

Read more

Protecting the eyes from sun exposure
Product News

Protecting the eyes from sun exposure

Employers have responsibilities to employees regarding all ‘at work’ activities. With the summer finally seeming to have started in earnest, Specsavers Corporate Eyecare is encouraging employers to consider eye care as part of their sun protection ...

Read more

New-look eye care website central tool for safety managers
Product News

New-look eye care website central tool for safety managers

Specsavers Corporate Eyecare has updated its website, increasing its use as an eye care tool for safety managers.


www.specsavers.co.uk/corporate

 

The new site is designed to be much mo...

Read more

Benefiting from workplace eye care
Product News

Benefiting from workplace eye care

89% of employees value eye care, but employers spend less time communicating it than other benefits

 

New research from Specsavers Corporate Eyecare shows how employers and employees value eye care as an employee ...

Read more

Eyecare and wellbeing link registers in Scotland
Product News

Eyecare and wellbeing link registers in Scotland

Specsavers Corporate Eyecare has held two health and wellbeing fairs for one of its customers, Registers of Scotland.

 

Registers of Scotland is the non-ministerial government department responsible for compiling ...

Read more

Majority of employers still providing over-goggles
Product News

Majority of employers still providing over-goggles

Important new research from Specsavers Corporate Eyecare reveals that over half (54%) of employers still provide safety over-goggles to those who wear everyday glasses.

Read more

Employees benefit from Specsavers upskilling awareness in  glaucoma - the silent thief of sight
Product News

Employees benefit from Specsavers upskilling awareness in glaucoma - the silent thief of sight

ALL Specsavers teams are being upskilled to better support patients with glaucoma – the leading cause of irreversible sight loss.

 Jim Lythgow, director of strategic alliances at Specsavers Corporate Eyecare, said: ‘Glaucoma is a s...

Read more

Employers not recognising smartphones as DSE
Product News

Employers not recognising smartphones as DSE

Research issued today by Specsavers Corporate Eyecare reveals the extent of smartphone use for work purposes but highlights the lack of related employee eyecare.

Read more

World Cancer Day, 4 February: the role of eyecare in screening
Product News

World Cancer Day, 4 February: the role of eyecare in screening

This World Cancer Day, Specsavers is calling for employers to review their eyecare policy and save lives

Read more

Specsavers celebrates Fujitsu win
Product News

Specsavers celebrates Fujitsu win

Specsavers Corporate Eyecare is proud to announce that household name, Fujitsu, is benefiting from its trusted eyecare services.

Read more

SMEs failing to provide DSE eyecare
Product News

SMEs failing to provide DSE eyecare

New figures from Specsavers Corporate Eyecare suggest there is a lack compliance among SMEs with the Health and Safety Display Screen Equipment regulations. The research shows that 44% of SMEs provide no eyecare at all to screen users, compared to 2...

Read more

Specsavers makes benefits road trip for Sky
Product News

Specsavers makes benefits road trip for Sky

As well as being Europe’s leading entertainment and communications business Sky is also a role model for employee benefits and wellbeing. To aid with communication and education, Sky has held a number of benefits fairs, to which Specsavers Corporat...

Read more

DSE compliance at just 10%
Product News

DSE compliance at just 10%

New figures from Specsavers Corporate Eyecare suggest there is a lack compliance with the Health and Safety Display Screen Equipment regulations. While the research, undertaken among over 500 senior decision makers from UK companies, shows a willing...

Read more

New-service success for Specsavers with ScotRail
Product News

New-service success for Specsavers with ScotRail

Specsavers Corporate Eyecare is celebrating the successful launch of a brand new eyecare service for ScotRail. The new Visual Acuity Assessment has been established by Specsavers Corporate Eyecare to meet the specific needs of Scotland’s railway all...

Read more

Do dark evenings put your workplace drivers at risk?
Product News

Do dark evenings put your workplace drivers at risk?

With driving for work purposes having its risks, the clocks changing and the evenings drawing in serves as a timely reminder for employers to make sure they are protecting their staff.

Read more

World Sight Day - 12th October 2017
Product News

World Sight Day - 12th October 2017

80% of blindness is avoidable | Employers have a role to play

Read more

Specsavers adds more exciting frame options to popular JCB range
Product News

Specsavers adds more exciting frame options to popular JCB range

With the new JCB range of prescription safety glasses proving a huge success, Specsavers Corporate Eyecare has added four new exciting frame options to the collection.

 

Styled to reflect a modern, tough, sporty l...

Read more

New small business research from Specsavers and YouGov
Product News

New small business research from Specsavers and YouGov

The rise and rise of DSE

….and what this means for small businesses

 

The latest research from Specsavers Corporate Eyecare today reveals the extent of Display Screen Equipment (DSE) use in small b...

Read more

Employers need to consider employee use of smartphones in their DSE policies
Product News

Employers need to consider employee use of smartphones in their DSE policies

New research, new thinking.
As working patterns change, and smart phones and handheld devices are increasingly used for a wide range of purposes, often to conduct everyday work, Specsavers Corporate Eyecare suggests that employers ensure their ey...

Read more

16,000 JCB safety frames dispensed in three months
Product News

16,000 JCB safety frames dispensed in three months

Specsavers Corporate Eyecare is delighted to announce that in three months since the launch of its new range of JCB prescription safety eyewear, 16,000 frames have already been dispensed.

Read more

Offer Kylie to your employees
Product News

Offer Kylie to your employees

Best-selling designer specs brand Kylie Minogue Eyewear is now available to Specsavers Corporate Eyecare clients, enabling them to offer the range to staff.

Read more

Specsavers to supply Admiral with eyecare
Product News

Specsavers to supply Admiral with eyecare

UK-based insurance giant Admiral has taken on Specsavers Corporate Eyecare as its new provider of workplace eyecare.

Read more

List your business for free

Create a business listing on the SHP directory

Get the SHP newsletter

The latest health and safety news and insights

Close
CONTACT SPECSAVERS CORPORATE EYECARE
* Oops!
* Oops!
* Oops!
* Oops!
* Oops!
I have read, understood and consent to your Privacy Policy
* sorry this is a required field
MESSAGE SENT!

Thanks for using SHP Directory,

Your enquiry has been sent to the selected companies, they will be in contact shortly.