Coronavirus / COVID-19 information + Reopening info – updated 18th May 2020

Latest on Maskell + Josephson and COVID-19 – 18th May 2020

Some reopening information.

Hi again. Despite it being under two weeks since the last update this is a long one! Please allow time to read through the entire message. There’s lots of important things to take in here.

Following on from Boris Johnson’s speech last week we are building a better idea of when we’ll be back open for non urgent visits. The current expectations are as follows:

1st June 2020: Retail back open – This is phase 2 of the government’s plans and is subject to change depending on how things progress.. This means anybody who is interested in getting new glasses or sunglasses (even if not urgent) can come and see our collections and buy.

4th July 2020: Clinics back open – This is phase 3 of the government’s plans and is subject to change depending on how things progress. Once this happens we will essentially be offering all usual services.

Over the last month we have invested heavily in a range of equipment that will allow us to carry out as many of our usual duties from a greater distance without compromising any level of quality or care. We’re confident that you’ll notice these differences when you come and see us and we’re sure you’ll feel super safe when in the practice.

If you are keen to buy any new glasses or prescription sunglasses and are worried that your prescription will change then do not fear. We are offering a guarantee that for any glasses ordered between retail opening and clinics opening that if your prescription changes, to the extent you’d benefit from updating to it, before the end of the year (Dec 31st 2020) we will replace the lenses in your glasses free of charge or offer you 50% off your new prescription if you want it into a different frame and want to keep the others as an alternative or a back-up. That’s in addition to any discount you’d get if on one of our care plans.

What can you expect when you next visit?

For the forseeable future we will be operating on a locked, and manned, door policy. This will control the amount of people in the practice at any time. Before entering the practice your temperature will be taken with a contactless thermometer and anybody with a high temperature or fever will be asked to go home. 

You will notice protective perspex screens all around the shop floor separating staff from each other and our customers and separating customers from other customers too. 

You will notice empty shelves where our frames once stood. Frames will be out of touch to prevent any contamination. You will be more than welcome to try on as many frames as you like and our expert team of dispensers will assist with choosing the right frames. Any frame that gets touched will be sterilised before anybody else tries it.

We have a new measuring device (the Zeiss VisuFit) that uses its 9 cameras to capture 3-dimensional images of a person’s face and allows more accurate measurements of a glasses wearer for ordering the lenses that are required. This can be operated from the other side of the building without any direct contact with the individual.

In the waiting room we have removed all magazines and most of the chairs. There will be a limit on 2 people per party and only 2 pairs of chairs in the waiting room, over 2 metres apart. 

When it comes to your pre-screening all equipment will be wiped down and cleaned with a 70% alcohol solution that is proven effective against all bacterias and coronaviruses. All pre-screening now includes OCT scans and Optomap wide-field imaging. This will allow a quicker and more detailed assessment of inside the eye.

In the consulting room you will likely not be asked to put on the traditional glasses to get your prescription checked. We have invested in new equipment that allows your optometrist to sit across the room (4 metres away) when checking your vision and prescription. There will be brief moments where your optometrist will be within 2 metres of you and if using the slit lamp to look at your eyes there is now a breath shield in place to prevent any contamination from you to us or us to you.

All of our appointment times are 50% longer to allow us to work from a greater distance and make sure everything is cleaned over as thoroughly as possible with no overlap between patients, preventing a congested and crowded waiting room.

In addition to all of this we will not be wearing usual work attire (which is the hardest part for me – those who’ve ever had a consultation with me will know how proud I am of my matching sock/shirt/tie/suit combinations) but will be wearing a different set of clothes each day that will get removed before leaving the practice, placed in a scrubs bag to be taken home and washed before reuse. Not to mention you can expect to see lots of disposable gloves, aprons and face masks galore!

Appointments now being taken for new glasses or sunglasses

We are now booking appointment for the 1st June onwards to sort out new glasses or sunglasses. These appointments can be made by calling the usual number (0161 941 6517), by emailing or by logging in to your online MySight account and booking the appointment on there.

Should government advice change we may need to be in touch to rearrange these appointments.

Get on the waiting list for your eye exams or contact lens checks

With 8 weeks (and counting) of back-log to get through as well as our ‘now due’ appointments and with longer appointment times and gaps between patients I think it’s fair to assume you may have to wait a little bit before we can see you. We will still offer priority appointments for emergencies so that anybody who needs to be seen quickly can, and will, be seen quickly.

If you think you’re coming up to being due for an appointment or want to have things checked then please get in touch to be added to the list. We will be working through this list on a first come first served basis starting off with those whose appointments were already booked in but have been cancelled because of COVID-19.

Help us with a little online survey

We have set up a small online survey (takes under 2 minutes to complete) to try and gauge what the public are feeling about their eyecare. Please could you spare a few moment and complete this by clicking HERE.

As always all the below still stands.

Contact Lens Wearers

Supply from contact lens manufacturers is running as normal but there are delays in everything in the postal service and couriers. Automated orders are being requested a few days early to make sure nobody is running low on lenses. If you are please let me know.

If you have ordered lenses please allow up to two weeks before letting me know if they haven’t arrived.

If you’re in need of any more lenses then please allow at least two weeks to get these to you.

If you require any cleaning solutions or eye drops we have those in stock and these can be delivered personally to you if you’re in the local area (Altrincham postcodes) or by mail if you’re further out, again allowing time to get it to you.

You can see the range of solutions, eye drops and cleaning products at this link.

Non contact lens wearers

We are offering repairs and replacement lenses as normal with all our suppliers and labs still open. However there are reduced personnel in many sites so longer waiting times for jobs to be completed. This means if you break or lose your glasses and couldn’t manage without them perhaps now is the time to think about getting that extra pair for security.

Emergencies only

We’re still only open for emergencies, be it related to the health of your eyes or an urgent requirement to update your glasses. I am available to speak to within our usual opening hours (09:0 – 17:30 Monday to Friday and 09:00 – 17:00 Saturday) and if you’re not sure if you need an emergency appointment then please call me and we can discuss this.


If you’re interested in getting a new pair of sunglasses then please have a browse Here and get in touch if you see anything you like. If you’d like a prescription putting in them please call or email me to discuss this more.

To arrange any of the above either call the practice (0161 941 6517) or email, or you can use the messaging service from your MySight online account if registered on our website for this. I can be contacted using any of these methods or you can contact me on 07877 806 531 or to my personal email address at

Please note you will not be able to book any appointments through the online system for clinical consultations during this time but you can still message us through it.


We look forward to welcoming you back when able to do so.


Once again, thanks for your support and your understanding.

Wishing you all ongoing good health.

Anthony Josephson