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Home » News » Why You Shouldn’t Visit the ER for Eye Emergencies During COVID-19

Why You Shouldn’t Visit the ER for Eye Emergencies During COVID-19

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On April 22, the American Optometric Association (AOA) urged patients with emergency eye care needs to get in touch with their local optometrist prior to seeking treatment in hospital emergency rooms. Doing so not only eases the burden on emergency departments but also helps prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

What Is Considered an Eye Emergency?

Most eye-related conditions can be treated in an outpatient optometry office or clinic. Emergency eye care includes, but is not limited to, urgent clinical advice or intervention for eye injuries and conditions that entail a foreign object in the eye, chemical burns, a sudden change in vision, flashes and floaters (which might suggest a retinal detachment), contact lens discomfort, red eyes and any other problems or symptoms that may impact or interfere with daily activities. 

Prioritizing Your Eye Care Needs During COVID-19

During the coronavirus outbreak, we have been going above and beyond to ensure that people are receiving the emergency eye care they need. 

Patients should first contact MyOptix Family Eyecare for guidance and potential treatment prior to heading to an overwhelmed hospital emergency room. Dr. Kera Kay can assess the level of care the patient needs—whether it's telehealth or urgent care that requires a visit to the eye clinic or, in severe cases, even the emergency room. 

This will ensure that patients get prompt treatment while allowing hospitals to conserve their resources for the current pandemic. In fact, research has shown that treating eye emergencies at eye doctors' offices can potentially divert 1.4 million patients away from emergency rooms per year.

While we have closed our store for routine appointments, MyOptix Family Eyecare at Evansville continues to provide emergency care for those who need it. We'd like to reassure our patients that we are here to help with anyone’s emergency eye care requirements – for both for new and existing patients.

References:

https://www.visionmonday.com/eyecare/coronavirus-briefing/crisis-response-tactics/article/aoa-cautions-patients-against-avoidable-er-visits-for-primary-eyecare-services-during-covid19-pandemic/

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We appreciate your patience as we adjust our office procedures and schedule to keep everyone as safe as possible. In accordance with the CDC we will continue to practice social distancing and limiting the number of patients in our office. The following guidelines will in place until further notice:

· Office Door will remain locked

· Only scheduled appointments will be permitted into the building. Anyone with you will be asked to wait in their vehicle.

· UPON ARRIVAL, PLEASE CALL 812-476-2020 FROM YOUR VEHICLE AND WE WILL USHER YOU IN FOR YOUR APPOINTMENT.

· If you have glasses or contacts to pick-up, please call 812-476-2020 and we will either ship glasses to you or provide “curb-side” pick-up.

· All staff, doctors, and patients must wear a face mask while in the office. If you do not have one, we will provide one for you.

· Adjustments, Repairs, or eyeglass purchases (without exam) must schedule an appointment. Days and times available will vary.

· MONDAY evenings (after 5:00) and SATURDAY hours are reserved for Doctor services/appointments only. No other services will be available, including eyewear pick-up.

Thank you again for your patience as we work to provide for your eye needs and balance that with patient and staff safety. We will continue monitoring the information from the CDC to make the most informed decisions.