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Boots Opticians Having Problems Digesting D&A? Discount Voucher and Review

ConsumerWatch / Healthcare Sector Jul 19, 2012 - 02:24 AM GMT

By: N_Walayat


Following my recent vision problem for some 15 minutes whilst at Manchester Airport, I had no choice but to bite the bullet and visit my local GP (ecclesall medical centre). Whilst my expectations were already low, they still managed to disappoint, seems like the reception staff are trained to so their best to obstruct patients, but that's for another article, the long and short of it was I had to go and see an optician (at my own expense) with a scrap of paper from the Doc to determine if there was a problem with my eyes or not.

I had been using Dolland and Aitchison for a number of years, who have recently been consumed by Boots Chemist. Regular correspondence offering a half price eye test state that all D&A records had been successfully transferred over to Boots, and that I can go into any branch and have an eye test with all my records there. Thus, I made an appointment at the nearby Queens Road, Sheffield branch of Boots D&A which is relatively large size and with convenient car parking, and has the look of being a relatively recent refurbishment. I arrived some 15 minutes late due to a flat tyre, though the staff were good enough to have the optician see me in a relatively short consultation (10mins), which included my explaining what had happened at Manchester and the photocopied scrap of paper the GP had given me with regards an opthamologist referral.

The consultation whilst a little rushed (my fault for being late) was adequate and importantly the optician explained that the problem experienced at Manchester airport was most probably a visual migraine that may never occur again, after a few more Q&A's I was led for the pressure and field eye tests.

However unlike the closed consulting room, these tests were conducted in an open area with people coming and going and even children noisily running about, whilst it did not matter with regards the pressure test it was VERY distracting during the field vision test, something that Boots / D&A seriously need to look into i.e. customers should not be in an distracting environment when conducting the field vision tests.

After these tests, I was told after a few minutes by an assistant that my eyes were ok and that I did not need glasses and should come back in 2years time, so off I went to pay. My expectations are that the Optician will write to the GP as per the (non) referral paper.

Special Discount - Eye Test for Just £10

The eye tests normally cost £20, with the 50% discount bringing this down to £10. Though, anyone can get the 50% discount via an online discount voucher that can be printed directly off the Boots and D&A sites -

Boots Having Problems Digesting D&A ?

At the point of paying at the counter, the clerk started coming out with a string of nonsense such as that they had me down as being a diabetic etc, and asked me why? How would I know why their customer data was wrong? Because I had never been diagnosed with diabetes and my most recent blood test was fine, which suggests to me that the takeover of D&A has resulted in corruption /garbling up of patient data. I did not think anything more of the time, and just paid and left.

Overall impression

Generally, bigger is not better, smaller stores within smaller chains whilst less convenient in their location (parking) and appointment times offered, tend to offer a better overall service i.e. the previous D&A store would have conducted the field test in a quite room rather than an open area with kids running around. Still one cannot complain too much given the £10 discounted eye tests currently on offer, though it remains a real shame that NHS GP practices and institutions remain far away from achieving a similar level of competency in delivery of routine health services, despite patients being forced to pay for them through high taxes.

By Nadeem Walayat

Copyright © 2005-2012 (Market Oracle Ltd). All rights reserved.

Nadeem Walayat has over 25 years experience of trading derivatives, portfolio management and analysing the financial markets, including one of few who both anticipated and Beat the 1987 Crash. Nadeem's forward looking analysis focuses on UK inflation, economy, interest rates and housing market. He is the author of three ebook's - The Inflation Mega-Trend; The Interest Rate Mega-Trend and The Stocks Stealth Bull Market Update 2011 that can be downloaded for Free.

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Nadeem is the Editor of The Market Oracle, a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication that presents in-depth analysis from over 600 experienced analysts on a range of views of the probable direction of the financial markets, thus enabling our readers to arrive at an informed opinion on future market direction.

Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any trading losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors before engaging in any trading activities.

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