Winner: Taank Optometrists
Taank Optometrists, an independent practice based in Cambridge, has community at its heart and aims to think creatively when it comes to patient engagement.
Practice owner and optometrist, Anjana Taank, says that “innovation, philanthropy and community” have been at the centre of building the practice’s identity.
The practice team is not afraid to think creatively when it comes to publicity, recently sponsoring and taking part in a regional fashion show. Ms Taank recounts: “It was a fantastic two-day event that saw models showcasing the latest trends from big name brands, provided by Taank, on the catwalk in front of over 300 guests.”
Taank Optometrists is not short of accolades either; winning awards for its eye catching window displays, making it into the shortlist of the Cambridge Business Awards for Independent Business of the Year in 2016, and, in 2015, taking home the AOP Award for Charity Initiative of the Year.
Commenting on this success, Ms Taank says: “Taank is only as good as its staff. We rely on our team to give every customer the highest levels of care and advice.”
The practice’s innovative attitude to promotion is matched by a commitment to patient care and clinical excellence, with Ms Taank recently gaining her independent prescribing diploma.
Taank Optometrists also provides specialist services in the community. Ms Taank explains: “In addition to providing services to the glaucoma clinic at Addenbrooke’s Hospital on a sessional basis, I also run specialist glaucoma services on behalf of the hospital within Taank’s reassuring practice setting.”
Reflecting on what makes a good practice, Ms Taank believes that listening to patients is key. “We take every opportunity to get in front of existing and potential patients, listen to what they want, and introduce them to eyewear options that eclipse the selections often found in ‘mainstream’ practices,” she says.
Ms Taank also believes that Taank Optometris’ size has been an asset. “We’re small and nimble enough to give our patients a top-to-tail bespoke personal service that puts their needs at the centre of everything we do,” she says.
Finalist: Eyesite Eyecare Centres
Eyesite Eyecare Centres founder, Suresh Munyal, believes that welcoming patients of all ages and diversifying has been essential to the practice’s success.
Mr Munyal founded the first of his three independent practices in 1987. All offer dispensing and take regular referrals from primary care services. Looking to the future, Mr Munyal is ambitious, saying: “Our best is yet to be achieved.”
Finalist: I Care Opticians
I Care Opticians prides itself on putting patients’ needs first and aims to raise awareness of eye health in the local community.
Founder, Stephen Vandevyver, says that the practice prioritises patient well-being, explaining: “We want patients to feel genuinely cared for.” This approach includes educating the local community, with school visits, local press activity and evening events focusing on awareness.