After a sterling 25 year career with Boots Opticians (formerly Dolland and Aitchison) in Hawick, the idea of taking it easy in life is not something former practice manager Wendy Douglas had ever contemplated.
In fact, what Wendy did next, whilst continuing to hill walk her beloved border cross collie Sammy, was to seek new horizons to work in an independent and progressive thinking eye clinic, J.H. Wilson’s of Melrose.
Wendy explained: “I absolutely loved my time with Boots. It was a heart-wrench saying farewell to such wonderful people. Being a part of the local community and learning so much about peoples lives, made me determined to give the best service I possibly could. It was, however, time to move on.”
Looking towards the future, Wendy’s mission now is to help promote eye care across generations in the Borders.
A new challenge was to introduce a Family Campaign. Wendy said: “We find that surprisingly a lot of people do not tend to get their sight checked until problems develop in later life, by which time their vision may have deteriorated. We want to encourage youngsters to look after their eyes earlier on in life as their vision can change so quickly.
“Eye examinations are encouraged every two years and we are fortunate and proud that this is free for everyone under Scotland’s NHS.”
Recognising this as an important health care issue, J.H. Wilson Opticians, now part of the Concept Eye Clinic group, are working across the region, to raise awareness amongst local people.
The practice has an established and loyal patient base and already provides state-of-the art 3D OCT scanning of the retina for early diagnosis and monitoring of disease with very close links to GP’s and the local Eye Infirmary.
This foundation of over 30 years in expert clinical direction is provided by Mr John Holmes Wilson himself and Mr Ross Dempster who says: “The campaign has proved very successful and is growing since we began a couple of month’s ago. We’ve treated a number of previously undetected problems through early diagnosis. Our aim is to improve children’s knowledge of eye health and to encourage parents to take their children for regular eye checks.”