Home Eye Tests

By: A.C.

I saw an information leaflet at my local Optician recently explaining that a Free Home Eye Test was available for certain groups of people. Intrigued, I looked at the service and to see if other groups of Opticians did the same.

It is important firstly to state that Scotland is wholly different from England in how Eye Tests are offered.

The Scottish Government states:

“If you are aged between 16 and 59 you can have a free NHS eye examination once every two years if required.

You can have a free NHS eye examination once a year, if required, if you:

  • Are under 16
  • Are 60 or over
  • Have ocular hypertension or diabetes
  • Have glaucoma
  • Are 40 or over and your mother, father, brother,
  • sister, son or daughter has glaucoma”

The home visit service is probably not new, but the home eye test service is becoming better known.

The particular service I saw is was provided by the Outside Clinic, though a quick Google search tells me that similar services are offered by Black and Lazar’s, Spec Savers, and Complete Community Care, and they will advise on whether you are eligible also for Optical Vouchers.

The entitlement as stated by Outdoor Clinic is as follows:

“You are entitled to a free NHS sight test at home if you are:

  • Unable to leave home unaccompanied or            
  • Require a home visit on account of a physical or mental disability

and you fall into one of the categories for a free NHS sight test listed below:

  • Aged 60 or over
  • Under 16, or under 19 and in full-time education
  • Registered blind or partially sighted
  • Diagnosed as having diabetes or glaucoma
  • 40 or over with a direct relative with glaucoma, or you have been advised by an ophthalmologist that you are at risk of glaucoma
  • Prescribed a complex lens

or you (or your partner) are receiving the following benefits or credits:

  • Income Support or Income Based Job Seekers Allowance (not contribution based)
  • Working Tax Credit and are named on a Tax Credit NHS Exemption Certificate
  • Child Tax Credit and are named on a Tax Credit NHS Exemption Certificate
  • You are named on a NHS certificate for full or partial help with health costs (HC2/3)
  • Pension Credit Guarantee Credit”
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