A charity providing free eye care and spectacles to homeless people saw more than 300 people over the Christmas period.
Taking part in London Crisis at Christmas, Vision Care for Homeless People (VCHP) tested the sight of 327 patients, dispensing spectacles when needed. A total of 23 people were referred into the hospital for further treatment or investigation.
More than 60 optical professionals volunteered at Crisis at Christmas, including ophthalmologists from Moorfields Eye Hospital.
Optometrist Maya Patel volunteered with VCHP for a third consecutive year over the Christmas period. She said: “I don’t feel that it is Christmas if I am not here. We were scheduled to run 30 clinics during the week but because of the demand we have run many more. Our patients make us feel very happy because they appreciate what we do so very much.”
28-year-old Matthew visited the clinic in Paddington, London over Christmas. He was diagnosed as being -15.00 dioptres and, having lost his glasses two weeks before visiting the clinic, said “the world is for the brave without glasses.”
During 2018, VCHP saw almost 2000 homeless people in its clinics across the UK, including London, Brighton, Birmingham, Exeter, Leeds and Manchester.