Minor Eye Conditions Service (MECS) Self Referral

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MECS is an NHS funded service. The service provides patients experiencing recently occurring medical eye conditions with the appropriate treatment. The service is provided by local optometrists at approved opticians with the specialist knowledge and skills to carry out this work.

Which Medical eye Conditions can be Treated by MECS?

  • Reduction in vision in one or both eyes.
  • Red eye(s).
  • Pain and/or discomfort in the eyes, around the eye area or temples.
  • Recent onset or sudden increase in flashing lights and/or floaters in one or both eyes.
  • Suspected foreign body in the eye. 

If you are unsure whether your symptoms qualify for the criteria, please contact one of the approved opticians listed below.

How do I Access MECS?

Please see the list of opticians below. Please be advised that your normal optometrist may not choose to offer this service.

You can contact any of the approved opticians (below) directly (self-refer) to make an appointment and ask to be seen under MECS. Alternatively, if you make an appointment to see your GP, he or she may refer you to the optometrist.

What Happens When I see the optometrist?

The optometrist will discuss your eye history, any symptoms you may be experiencing, and any related medical history. You will receive an eye assessment relevant to your symptoms.

Please take a list of current medications and your glasses with you to the appointment.

As a Result of the Consultation you may be:

  • Given appropriate treatment by the optometrist, this may include a follow-up appointment.
  • Referred to your GP for appropriate treatment if your eye condition is related to your general health.
  • Referred directly to the hospital eye service if you eye condition is more serious.

Following your appointment, the optometrist will notify your GP of the outcome of the consultation in order to ensure your medical records are updated.

Additional Information

  • You may not be able to drive immediately after your MECS examination.
  • This service does not replace your routine eye examination. A sight test will not be provided as part of the assessment or treatment and you will not be issued with a prescription for glasses.

If you have any of the following conditions you must go directly to A&E:

  • Sudden loss of vision in one or both eyes.
  • Considerable eye pain.
  • Significant trauma, such as a penetrating injury or lacerations to the eye(s) or lid(s).
  • Chemical eye injury or burns.
  • Problems arising from recent eye surgery.

If you have any eye condition which is being monitered by your optometrist or hospital eye service (such as cataracts, glaucoma or dry eye) this will not be covered by MECS.

List of Opticians Providing MECS

Please be advised there may be additional Opticians offering MECS – If you have any queries please ask at reception.