Hove optometrist, Dr Sandip Doshi of The Eyecare Centre in Church Rd Hove, has facilitated donation of over 250 pair of safety spectacles to frontline NHS workers and care staff during the COVID-19 crisis. He was approached by the National Sales Manager of Shamir Optical Ltd (UK), Russ Bickle, who is also based in Brighton and Hove, to help with the donation of these essential pieces of personal protective equipment (PPE) to keyworkers during the pandemic.
Dr Doshi was able to utilise his connections to facilitate donations of 75 pairs to The Sussex Eye Hospital, 134 pairs to The Birmingham Midland Eye Clinic and 45 pairs to community care company Lifeline Health ltd in Kent.
Additionally, he arranged for the staff and surgeons at The Centre for Sight in east Grinstead to receive 30 pairs at markedly reduced cost.
Dr Doshi explained: ‘When Russ Bickle reached out to me at the beginning of lockdown, there was a dire shortage of the correct PPE to frontline staff, so this offer by from Shamir Optical UK was very welcome. I knew I could use my connections to get the equipment to those who were in desperate need of it. Using email, telephone and social media I was able to contact colleagues who made the donations happen quickly.’
Dr Doshi and Shamir Optical were also able to assist a Mr Bhavin Visavadia, Consultant Maxillofacial surgeon who specialises in oral cancer at Northwick Park Hospital in northwest London by arranging for a free pair of anti-fog coated spectacle lenses for when he operates. Mr Visavaida said: ‘I thank Dr Doshi for his assistance and expertise in advising about my new antifog lenses for my operating spectacles. These glasses work really well when I’m operating under my PPE.’
Dr Doshi added that he was not stopping there and was actively working with some of his other suppliers to getting donations of other essential eyecare products to frontline NHS staff. He hopes that a significant donation of lubricating eyedrops can be agreed in the next week.