» Scrivens Optician’s hearing service received quality stamp of approval

07 September, 2013

Less than 12 months after introducing NHS hearing services in over 80 of its UK branches, Scrivens Opticians & The Hearing Company is the first high street multi-sited retailer to achieve Improving Quality in Physiological diagnostic Services (IQIPS) accreditation.

The United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) has granted IQIPS accreditation to the Company for its Adult Hearing Services. The award was achieved following months of stringent assessment in four key areas; patient experience, safety, facilities, resource and workforce and clinical. IQIPS is a professionally-led programme, sponsored by the Chief Scientific Officer, NHS England and hosted by the Royal College of Physicians (RCP). It aims to improve service quality, care and safety for patients undergoing physiological diagnostics and treatment.

The introduction of NHS hearing services on the high street was a result of changes in Government rules that enable Scrivens Opticians & The Hearing Company to work alongside GPs to give more choice to patients, reduce waiting times and deliver a more accessible and flexible service in the local community.

More than 50% of over 60s have a level of hearing loss but most wait until their mid 70s before seeking treatment. The new scheme aims to ‘de-medicalise’ hearing loss so that people seek and receive treatment earlier following a direct referral from their GP. It is hoped that this earlier management and treatment of hearing loss in the community will result in better outcomes for patients, reduced social isolation and an improved quality of life.

Scrivens Opticians & The Hearing Company’s legal director, Mark Georgevic, said: “We have offered hearing care services for more than 50 years in our branches and have a highly skilled and professional team of hearing aid audiologists, so it’s very pleasing to be the first high street provider to have been granted this formal recognition.

“We were delighted to be awarded the NHS contracts and have worked hard to achieve this quality marque.”

Dr Kerry Tinkler, the clinical lead for the IQIPS programme at the RCP, said: “This achievement of IQIPS Accreditation by Scrivens marks real progress in the drive for patient-focused care. Working with GPs, Scrivens have been able to improve the service patients receive and the speed in which they receive it. Attaining IQIPS Accreditation provides confidence for patients and commissioners and it can provide reassurance of the quality of the service and for staff it is a ‘badge’ of quality indicating confidence in their work and the service they provide.”

On presenting the IQIPS certificate to Scrivens, Paul Stennett Chief Executive of UKAS said. “I congratulate Scrivens Opticians & The Hearing Company on being the first high street retailer to achieve UKAS accreditation to the IQIPS standard. This reflects the commitment that Scrivens has shown to delivering high quality service to its customers. I look forward to this accreditation being implemented across all of Scrivens locations.”

Mark Georgevic concluded: “We have been delighted by the response of patients to our NHS service; customer feedback shows that our work with the NHS is improving patient care locally and offering more choice, with appointments at times to suit patients’ lifestyles. With customers now being able to choose the most suitable provider for them following a referral from their GP, hearing care is simpler, faster, more convenient and easier to access – a positive outcome for both the patient and the NHS.”