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Why You Shouldn’t Visit the ER for Eye Emergencies During COVID-19

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On April 22, the American Optometric Association (AOA) urged patients with emergency eye care needs to get in touch with their local optometrist prior to seeking treatment in hospital emergency rooms. Doing so not only eases the burden on emergency departments but also helps prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

What Is Considered an Eye Emergency?

Most eye-related conditions can be treated in an outpatient optometry office or clinic. Emergency eye care includes, but is not limited to, urgent clinical advice or intervention for eye injuries and conditions that entail a foreign object in the eye, chemical burns, a sudden change in vision, flashes and floaters (which might suggest a retinal detachment), contact lens discomfort, red eyes and any other problems or symptoms that may impact or interfere with daily activities. 

Prioritizing Your Eye Care Needs During COVID-19

During the coronavirus outbreak, we have been going above and beyond to ensure that people are receiving the emergency eye care they need. 

 

Patients should first contact TSO Fall Creek for guidance and potential treatment prior to heading to an overwhelmed hospital emergency room. Dr. Alexander Chen can assess the level of care the patient needs—whether it's telehealth or urgent care that requires a visit to the eye clinic or, in severe cases, even the emergency room. 

 

This will ensure that patients get prompt treatment while allowing hospitals to conserve their resources for the current pandemic. In fact, research has shown that treating eye emergencies at eye doctors' offices can potentially divert 1.4 million patients away from emergency rooms per year.

 

While we have closed our store for routine appointments, TSO Fall Creek at Humble continues to provide emergency care for those who need it. We'd like to reassure our patients that we are here to help with anyone’s emergency eye care requirements – for both for new and existing patients.

 

 

References:

 

https://www.visionmonday.com/eyecare/coronavirus-briefing/crisis-response-tactics/article/aoa-cautions-patients-against-avoidable-er-visits-for-primary-eyecare-services-during-covid19-pandemic/


New Hours to Serve You

Monday-Friday 9am-5pm
Saturday 9am-3pm

With the lifting of the “Stay Home, Work Safe” order, we have modified our hours to better serve you. We remain committed to taking exceptional care of your eyes while maintaining our screening measures and safety precautions to ensure the well-being of our patients, staff, and community.

For now, we will continue to offer curbside pickup of your eyewear and complimentary shipping of contact lenses to your home.

We stand with you during this challenging time. We pray that you and your families remain healthy and safe. Thank you for entrusting us with your eye care!

Warmest,
Dr. Alexander Chen, Dr. Melanie Leung , and Team