Optician services

Opticians provide eye health services for patients.

It is important to care for your eyes and get them checked regularly. When you visit an optician or optometrist, you’ll have your sight tested to ensure you don’t have any abnormalities or signs of any eye disease such as cataracts or glaucoma. If necessary they will refer you on a specialist doctor or eye surgeon for further advice and treatment. They also prescribe and fit glasses and contact lenses.

To find an optician in your local area please visit www.nhs.uk/service-search/find-an-optician

Free NHS sight tests and optical vouchers

You may qualify for free sight tests and help towards the cost of glasses or contact lenses if you are

  • are under 16
  • are 16, 17 or 18 and in full-time education
  • are 60 or over
  • are registered as partially sighted or blind
  • have been diagnosed with diabetes or glaucoma
  • are 40 or over and your mother, father, sibling or child has been diagnosed with glaucoma
  • have been advised by an eye doctor (ophthalmologist) that you’re at risk of glaucoma
  • are a prisoner on leave from prison
  • are eligible for an NHS complex lens voucher – your optician can advise you about your entitlement

You’re also entitled if you or your partner – including civil partner – receive certain benefits, or you’re under the age of 20 and the dependant of someone receiving certain benefits.

For full details, please visit www.nhs.uk/nhs-services/opticians/free-nhs-eye-tests-and-optical-vouchers

If you don’t qualify for a free NHS sight test, you will have to pay for a private test. The cost of private sight tests varies, so it’s best to shop around. You can find an optician by visiting the NHS website.

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