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Lending a hand

Charity confirms more dispenses than ever before

VCHP Crisis at Christmas volunteers

Vision Care for Homeless People (VCHP) tested the sight of 312 people during the Crisis at Christmas initiative that gives homeless people access to a range of health and wellbeing services over the festive period.

The charity, which provides free sight tests and spectacles to homeless people, confirmed that it has dispensed a total of 75 ready readers and 241 spectacles during the event, “more than ever before,” it said.

The prescriptions were produced by Essilor and ranged from -12.00D to +10.25D.

During the initiative, The Outside Clinic loaned domiciliary kits to the charity, while Essilor provided the lenses and glazed them free of charge.

York-based consultant ophthalmologist, Jan van der Hoek, volunteers at the clinics every Christmas and revealed that 32 people were referred to Moorfields or the Western Eye Hospital for further investigation, with one needing immediate attention.

Mr Hoek explained: “He had a retinal tear and a bleed to the eye and needed laser treatment, which we organised and he was treated immediately. He was able to stay at the Crisis centre for the week so that he could recover.”

For more information on VCHP, visit its website.