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29 Sep 2014

Bosses Urged To Take Better Care Of Employees´ Eye Health

New research reveals that over half of UK employees (53%) feel that their working environment has a negative impact on their vision and eye health, an article on The HR Director reports.

The findings come from a survey conducted by health insurance company Westfield Health, which questioned 7,000 UK workers. More than half reported that their current working conditions negatively affected their eye health, causing conditions such as eye stain, dry eyes or poor vision.

Whilst 82% of employees use a visual display unit (VDU) in their role, almost a third (32%) did not know about their legal entitlements to eye care. Health and Safety legislation requires employers to pay the full amount of eye tests and glasses for any staff who use a VDU.

With screens playing an increasingly significant part in today´s workplaces, experts warn employers that they have a duty of care to their staff, and that staff should be better informed about their rights in this matter.

Westfield Health was the official partner for the annual National Eye Health Week (22-28 September) which promotes the importance of good eye health and going for regular sight check-ups – experts recommend once every two years.

According to David Cartwright, chair of National Eye Health Week, “prolonged screen use can put enormous strain on our eyes and triggers episodes of visual stress.”

He advises computer users to follow the 20-20-20 rule, which involves looking away from the screen every 20 minutes for 20 seconds, focusing on an object 20 feet away. This “can really help combat the effects of screen fatigue and prevent your eyes feeling sore, itchy and tired,” he explains.

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