Opticians are only open to those in need of urgent eyecare while services are stretched due to the coronavirus pandemic, the NHS has said.

Following advice from the General Optical Council, opticians will no longer be holding routine eye appointments, opening only to help with essential eyecare.

Patients can still contact their optician if; vision becomes blurry or changes suddenly, eyes become red or painful, they are a key worker who requires eyecare, or they have been advised by NHS 11 to visit an optician.

Other circumstances considered urgent include a person breaking their glasses and needing a replacement pair to function, or having trouble with contact lenses.

Those in need of optical help have also been urged to contact an optician before visiting their GP or pharmacy due to the current extra pressure on NHS services.

Calling opticians or visiting the practice website for advice is also an option.

Some practices may need to close due to staff shortages and other concerns. If so, patients should contact a different practice.