The spirit of Concept is bold, creative and indefatigable. Our objective is to provide you with the best possible experience in eye care. Behind our boutique scenes, the company’s founder developed an innovative model of providing clinical care to those living in the shadows of society, experiencing health inequalities, with the belief that access to eye care is not just a privilege, but a human right.
Concept was the first independent optometrist practice in the North East of England to raise awareness with NHS commissioners regarding the importance of access to eye care and preventative measures to tackle eye pathology in ‘hard to reach’ communities experiencing poverty, health inequalities and isolation from mainstream services. Directors Shehla Naqvi and Founder Vik Kumar developed the social model ethos of the company emanating from work with dementia sufferers in Nursing and Care homes to inner city projects with the belief that making a difference to a person’s vision inevitably impacts on their quality of life, place in society, dignity and emotional well being. Over the years, Concept has worked with user groups including, mental health sufferers, people experiencing learning difficulties, drug addiction, asylum seekers and refugees, sex workers and the homeless. It has also funded translated eye care resources and it’s own health interpreters to aid clinical outreach sessions. Concept has worked with 37 community and regeneration funded projects including The Millin Centre, The Chinese Healthy Living Project and Places for People, the Salvation Army and Tyneside Cyrenians. In 2012 the company became a ‘top supporter level’ member and a globally recognised ‘Associate Practice’ with the international charity, Optometry Giving Sight to help fund clinical expertise and resources to countries in Africa and Asia diaspora.
In 2009 Concept introduced a family ‘healthy eyes’ awareness campaign now established as the ‘Kids Campaign’. This runs for six months each year in partnership with local schools and parents to promote the importance of regular sight checks and healthy vision in children and young people. By the summer of 2018, over 115 schools took part across Newcastle, Durham, North Tyne & Wear, Bridgwater in Somerset and Melrose in the Scottish borders. Head teachers working in North East IMD (index of multiple deprivation) schools were also keen for their pupils to benefit from this initiative. Concept’s optometrists recognised that poor eyesight can have a significant effect on a child’s ability to learn and on their behaviour and confidence, yet often goes unrecognised by teachers, parents and by children themselves. The sooner vision problems are detected – the better the outcome and quality of life.
The Concept story is inspired by great design, people and vision. The story is also human one, with a vision based on relationship, courage, a passion for making eye care accessible, and trust. There are no barriers at Concept, because the privilege to serve you is ours.