Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Some of our patients are understandably nervous about coming in to hospital for an appointment during the pandemic. To help reassure you, we’ve provided answers to frequently asked questions about how we’re working to keep patients safe, and what you can expect when you come in for an appointment. You will also find information here on emergency care, deferral of appointments, and also how to contact us, should you need to.

I have been avoiding coming to Moorfields because I am worried about Coronavirus. How do I know it’s safe?

If we have asked you to attend an urgent appointment it’s because our doctors and their teams have assessed your case and believe it is important for you to receive treatment now. If you are worried, please contact your clinic and ask to speak to your consultant who can provide you with more information on this. We have put safety measures in place to help protect you when you come in, which you can read more about below.

Why is it concerning when patients don’t attend appointments?

There's been a worrying drop off in the number of patients coming to see us with sight threatening problems since lockdown. If we have asked you to attend an urgent appointment, it’s because our doctors have reviewed your records and believe you would benefit from treatment.

What do I do if I have an eye care emergency?

We understand you may be afraid to come into hospital at this time, but if you have a sudden loss of vision (in the middle of your sight, or in another area of your vision) that does not improve within a couple of hours, it's vital that you seek medical attention. Moorfields patients can speak to a doctor via our online A&E service and we can assess whether or not you need to come in. You can access this service at https://www.moorfields.nhs.uk/emergency-care 

Can I bring someone with me?

Our waiting areas have fewer seats to allow for social distancing, so please attend your appointment alone unless you need a carer with you. We understand that you may need to travel in with, or be collected by, a companion, but to protect everyone, we ask that they do not enter the hospital. 

For patients coming in for surgical procedures, we ask that, if you need someone with you, they drop you off and pick you up from the ward, but do not stay in the hospital unless absolutely necessary.

Please arrive no more than 15 minutes ahead of your appointment. We need patients to stick to appointment times, to minimise the number of people in waiting areas and to ensure everyone is seen on time. 

What measures has Moorfields put in place to keep me safe?

We have put the following safety measures in place to keep our patients and staff safe

  • Face masks are given to all patients on entry at our hospitals and clinics.
  • Patients will have their symptoms checked before they enter the hospital at City Road.
  • Our staff are wearing protective equipment to keep you and them safe.
  • We have safety measures in place, including markers on the floor and waiting rooms set out to maintain social distancing.
  • We have installed breath guards for examinations using slit lamps, and perspex screens have been put up at most reception desks.
  • We have restricted the number of visitors to one per patient, and staggered appointment times, to minimise the number of patients in the hospital at any given time.
  • Please also remember to wash your hands or use hand sanitiser where possible. 

Find out more about the use of face coverings and surgical face masks in our short animation. 

I cancelled my appointment because I was worried about attending, but I’ve changed my mind. How do I get an appointment?

If you have any questions about attending your appointment, please email us, including your hospital or NHS number, at moorfields.outpatientbookingsbc@nhs.net - Please note, we are unable to answer queries for patients who attend our clinics at Croydon, Purley, Bedford, Northwick Park and Ealing through this email address. Please contact these sites directly using the contact details found online at www.moorfields.nhs.uk/appointments

If you've had a sudden loss of vision, have dark shadows or floaters in your eyes, or have sustained an injury, contact us straight away. Moorfields patients can use our online A&E service

I am worried about using public transport to get to my appointment. What transport options are available to me?

We understand that many patients are wary about travelling to appointments on public transport. Options available include taxis and patient transport if you cannot drive or find someone to help you with a lift. Please see our appointments page for more details.

My routine appointment was deferred due to lockdown. When will I get an appointment again?

We understand that you might be feeling anxious about this your appointment having been deferred. but our doctors and their teams have reviewed your case records and will be in touch as soon as they can with details of your new appointment. If you do notice changes to your vision or if you have any concerns about your eye health, it is important that you contact us on 020 7566 2345 to discuss with our nurse-led team. 

To help you manage your eye care at home in the meantime, we have produced some useful guidance, which includes information on access to and use of medicines. Use the 'Guidance for patients' link below to access this information. 

Some clinics are offering video conferencing for appointments. Can we expect to see more of that, moving forward?

To reduce the amount of unnecessary journeys into hospital, we are offering a range of appointments using secure video conferencing technology. Whilst some appointments and treatments will still need to be delivered in our hospital, we are looking at how we can expand our virtual services for patients.

What do I do if I need general advice on my eye care?

We are still here to help you with any concerns you have about your sight. Urgent appointments remain in place, and A&E is still open. But if you have a minor injury, you may be able to treat it yourself. Our eye care section on the website provides information on managing your condition at home. You will also find contacts for specific clinics and contacts for the nurse-led advice line: https://www.moorfields.nhs.uk/my-eye-care-and-coronavirus

Why can't I get through on the phone?

We are receiving a high level of calls and are responding as quickly as we can. 

If you have any questions about attending your appointment, please email us, including your hospital or NHS number, at moorfields.outpatientbookingsbc@nhs.net - Please note, we are unable to answer queries for patients who attend our clinics at Croydon, Purley, Bedford, Northwick Park and Ealing through this email address. Please contact these sites directly using the contact details found online at www.moorfields.nhs.uk/appointments

When emailing us, please include the following information to help us get to you as soon as we can:

  • Name
  • Hospital/NHS number
  • Date of Birth 
  • Postcode
  • Contact number 

Moorfields patients and those living in central London who require emergency eye care (sight threatening problems or eye injuries) can use our A&E Attend Anywhere service.

These video consultations will allow us to assess your condition and provide advice on whether or not you need to come into our A&E department for further checks. More information can be found on the Emergency care page. If you require urgent medical advice out of these hours, you can contact our A&E department on 020 7253 3411.

How do I know I am being contacted by someone at Moorfields?

We are currently only contacting people about their appointments, and will not ask for your bank details. Sadly, we have heard of a scam where people ask for financial details whilst purporting to be carrying out a Moorfields survey. If you are in doubt about an incoming call, ring us back on our main switchboard, 020 7253 3411.

I’m not a Moorfields patient - can I use Moorfields services?

Residents who live in central London can use Moorfields A&E services, but these services are for sight threatening problems only. Patients of Moorfields are usually referred to Moorfields via their GP or optician.

Further information:

Last updated: 19th July 2021