The General Optical Council is today thanking all of the eyecare professionals, patients, employers, manufacturers and professional bodies who helped spread the word about good contact lens care during Love Your Lenses Week.
The week, from 25-31 March, promoted good contact lens care after GOC research showed that many patients were not looking after their contact lenses properly.
It focused on two key messages: ‘don’t lose sight of your optician’ to remind people to have regular contact lens checks, and ‘contact lenses and water don’t mix’ to let them know not to get their contact lenses wet by, for example, swimming or showering in them.
Dozens of optical businesses, big and small, promoted Love Your Lenses across traditional and social media.
Over a million people saw Tweets using the #LoveYourLenses hashtag and the BBC featured a story with patient Irenie Ekkeshis. Irenie lost the sight in one eye after getting a contact lens infection and then worked with the British Contact Lens Association and the Love Your Lenses campaign to raise awareness of the risks of infection from allowing contact lenses to come into contact with water.
Thousands of patients responded to the story on social media by saying they had not been aware of this advice and that they would take steps in the future to avoid getting their contact lenses wet.
GOC director of strategy Alistair Bridge said, “Love Your Lenses Week was a big success, reaching millions of people and educating them about good contact lens care. It’s clear from the thousands of comments online that the campaign has had a direct and positive impact on patient safety. We owe a big thanks to Irenie Ekkeshis for sharing her story and to all members of the public and everyone in the optical industry who helped spread the word.”
The GOC plans to repeat Love Your Lenses Week in March 2018.