Community Eyecare has announced plans to open a community ophthalmology clinic at Gateshead Metrocentre in March, 2022 to relieve pressure on NHS services.

It said the North East and Yorkshire region experienced a 34% reduction in routine elective care referrals, including cataract surgery, during the pandemic.

Imran Rahman, CEO of Community Eyecare said: ‘The new service will enable us to support the NHS by easing the burden of extensive backlogs that have built up during the pandemic. Giving back to the community is something that is very important to all of us at CHEC and this new opening will allow us to provide the North East region with crucial support ensuring that patients can be seen more quickly.’