The Business Case for Low Vision
After sharing his experience and a low vision patient’s perspective on what more can be done to improve services Daniel Williams (UK) gives key points to better orientate business for low vision patients.
- Embrace the wider market to benefit from enhanced reputation and new niche markets through word of mouth referrals.
- Offer services for low vision customers - forget lots of sympathy and apologies and become business-minded and practical and show you care, with empathy and engagement.
- Welcome customers with low vision by making them feel they are coming into a comfortable environment and create a positive and relaxed experience which will always help raise your profile and increase profits
- Don’t avoid common expressions like, ‘See you later’ or, ‘Nice to see you again’
- Become familiar with equality laws, offer your staff visual impairment awareness training and arrange an access audit of your premises. Many people without sight loss such as wheelchair users and parents with pushchairs will also welcome increased ease of access.Many adaptations are low cost, such as a handrail on stairways, clear signs, using contrasting colours and markings for steps or other obstacles; glass doors are a partially sighted person’s nightmare
- Offer brochures or instructions in large print and Braille. A magnifier is a must-have for many people with limited vision. A high-quality range of sunglasses with different tints and filters provides upselling opportunities. Consider offering video magnifiers and large print phones.
- Adjustable lamps are helpful and carefully consider aspects such as glare, sunlight, artificial light, combination and directed lighting.
- Offering home visits for patients with a visual impairment will also be popular with other groups including older people and their families who may feel obliged to give up a day’s work to help a relative.
- A marketing strategy that includes targeting health clinics and surgeries, local support groups and hospital areas where patients with low vision visit regularly is likely to bring in more customers who are seeking a modern, access-aware optometrist.