Minor Eye Conditions Service (MECS)

If you have a recent problem with your eyes - such as sore eyes, red eyes or visual disturbance - you can be assessed and treated by our local Minor Eye Conditions Service.  This is a free NHS service available from a number of local opticians.

What is a Minor Eye Condition?

Conditions that can be seen under the service include:

  • Red eye or eyelids
  • Dry eye, or gritty and uncomfortable eyes
  • Irritation and inflammation of the eye
  • Significant recent sticky discharge from the eye or watery eye
  • Recently occurring flashes or floaters,
  • Ingrowing eye lashes
  • Recent and sudden loss of vision
  • Foreign body in the eye

What is not covered?

This is not a sight test. Also, if you have major eye condition that is being regularly monitored by your optometrist or hospital eye service, this will not be covered by this service.  Examples are cataracts, diabetic retinopathy or glaucoma.

Who is this service for?

If you are registered with a local GP you can use this free service.  It is for people of all ages - adults and children.  Children under 16 years of age must be accompanied at their appointment by an adult.

Where should I go?

Registered optometry practices (opticians) offering the service are listed on below.  An appointment will normally be required, so telephone first.  Appointments are available during normal working hours and some practices offer appointments at the weekend.  Not all practices have an optometrist available every day, but if they don't, they will be able to find you an alternative appointment nearby

How does it work?

To make an appointment, call one of the opticians listed below.  You will be asked some questions about your symptoms in order to assess how quickly you need to be seen by the service, which will normally be within 24 hours in urgent cases and within a few days for routine appointments.

Please take your glasses and a list of your current medication with you to the appointment.  The optometrist may put drops in your eyes to enlarge your pupils in order to get a better view inside your eyes.  You should not drive until the effects of these drops have worn off, which may take a few hours.

If your eye condition is more serious the optometrist will book you an urgent appointment at a hospital eye clinic.  If you need a routine appointment with a hospital, the optometrist will organise this for you.

If your eye condition is in relation to your general health, you may also be advised to make an appointment with the Practice.

List of participating opticians at March 2019

ADS Eyeclinic19-23 Norton Road, STOCKTON TS18 2BW01642 6766327
Bayfields12 Market Place, BARNARD CASTLE DL12 8ND01833 631849
BootsUnit 137, Middleton Grange, HARTLEPOOL TS24 7RZ01429 891291
Boots24a High Row, DARLINGTON DL3 7QW01325 466019
Cooper & Barr4 Front Street, SEDGEFIELD TS21 3AT01740 582060
Cooper & Leatherbarrow10 Duke Street, DARLINGTON DL3 7AF01325  463267
G.A. & J.M. Foster92 Hight Street, WILLINGTON DL15 0PE01388 746800
GibsonsBlandford Building, Dene Terrace, HORDEN SR8 4JF01915 862484
Grundy & Naisbitt1 Sanderson Street, COXHOE DH6 4DF01913 770628
I.M. Anderson3 Mautland Street HOUGHTON LE SPRING DH4 4BH01915 842226
K McGuiness OpticiansAvenue House, Greenwell Road NEWTON AYCLIFFE  DL5 4DH  01325 316666
Mellis Eyecare10 Trinity Mews CLEVELAND TS3 6AL01642 225671
R J Naisbitt OptometryCo-Op Buildings, Headley Terrace SOUTH HETTON  DH6 2UE0191 520 8059
Sight Durham5 Osmond Terrace, Shiney Row HOUGHTON LE SPRING DH4 4QN01913 852004
Sight Ltd34 The Chare PETERLEE  SR8 1AE0191 586 5671
Simon Berry41A Marshall Terrace DURHAM DH1 2HX01913 757544
Specsavers45 Newgate Street BISHOP AUCKLAND  D14 7EW01388 606080
Specsavers66 Front Street CHESTER LE STREET DH3 3BD01913 872930
Specsavers45 Middle Street CONSETT DH8 5QP01207 586910
Specsavers41 High Row DARLINGTON DL3 7QW01325 461155
Specsavers1-4 North Road DURHAM DH1 4PW0191 383 9495
Specsavers`Unit 134 Middleton Grange Shopping HARTLEPOOL TS24 7RD01249 233444
Specsavers55 Beveridge Way NEWTON AYCIFFE  DL5 4DP01325 328800
SpecsaversUnit 8 The Chare PETERLEE  SR1 1AE0191 587 2223
SpecsaversUnit 10b, Byron Place SEAHAM  SR7 7DR0191 513 3030
Specsavers2-4 King Street, RICHMOND DL10 4HP01626 870513
Specsavers88 Albany Mall, The Galleries WASHINGTON NE38 7RT0191 419 2525
StewarT Eyecare99 Front Street WHICKHAM NE16 4JL0191 488 2474
T M Hedley23 Front Street HETTON LE HOLD DH5 9PF0191 526 3134

Click here for more information

Updated: 06/04/2019

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