26th March 2018

Reasonable Adjustments at the Optician

This month our blog is written by Paul Scarrott, who is one of our learning disabled trustees. Paul was keen to share an example of how a company (in this case Specsavers in Cowley Centre in Oxford) made the necessary reasonable adjustments to deliver a good service to somebody with a Learning Disability .

My wife Jackie and I went to Specsavers in Cowley, Oxford. We have been going there for a long time. The manager Roy and his staff are always really nice and take the time to help us.

They were running a bit behind with appointments on the day but a member of staff told us where to wait and how long it would be, so that we didn’t get too anxious.

My wife is in wheelchair so they made sure we could both go into a room downstairs so we were together.

I went in first and had a really good eye test. The optician asked me lots of questions and explained things to me. They had to put a puff of air into my eyes and she asked me if I was ok with it. She explained that my eyes had gotten worse and that I needed new glasses.

Jackie went in after me and the optician asked how we could help her out of the wheelchair and into the optician’s chair. I helped Jackie like I usually do but it was nice that this woman asked to help. I was allowed to sit in with Jackie to make sure she felt ok. It was interesting to see how they do an eye test and she explained things really well. Jackie needs new glasses too for reading and watching TV.

When we finished our appointments, I asked the optician some questions. I asked her how they all helped people with Learning Disabilities, Autism and other disabilities in this environment. She gave me a demonstration of how they turn the lights down low for people with Autism. She showed me pictures on her screen that they use for people who cannot communicate verbally. They use things like planes and animals.

She explained that if a carer came with someone, it is important to speak to the person who is getting their eyes tests and not the carer or family member, but she did say it was important that they were included.

A different member of staff helped us to choose our glasses. She told us how much money we had to spend on glasses and showed us ones that we could afford. She explained about the different styles and the different lenses. She was very helpful.

I was really impressed with the different ways that they can help people with different needs. The staff at Specsavers in Cowley seem to have had lots of training and I am looking forward to going back to get my new glasses.

*All information is correct at the time of publishing

My Life My Choice

MLMC is an Oxfordshire based charity with a national profile whose prime objective is to raise the self-esteem and quality of life for people with learning disabilities. They do this by campaigning, and providing volunteering, training, employment and social opportunities for its members. MLMC also work with other organisations to help produce information for people with learning and communication difficulties that is simple and easy to understand. Read more

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