eye emergency Berkshire

National Eye Health Week: What To Do In An Eye Emergency

National Eye Health Week takes place this week. As well as drawing your attention towards what you can do to improve your eye health, we also want to use the campaign as an opportunity to make sure you know what to do in the event of an eye emergency.

Eye emergencies can be particularly traumatic and frightening. Our eyes are the window to the world, and if that window closes, even just temporarily, it can cause many of us to panic. To avoid this, it is really important to make sure you know where to go and what to do.

Many of us would go straight to A&E. However there are also a number of alternative services for patients in Berkshire which include:


  • An Emergency Treatment Eye Clinic

This service operates of King Edward VII Hospital in Windsor on:

Monday to Friday, from 9.00am to 5.00pm, and
Saturday mornings, from 9.00am to 1.00pm

If you or another family member or friend has an eye emergency during these times, please call 01753 860441.


  • The On-Call Opthalmologist at the Royal Berkshire Foundation Trust

This service is also available during bank holidays and can be accessed by calling 0118 322 5111.


  • An Eye Casualty at the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading

This service operates on:

Monday to Friday, from 9.00am to 5.00pm, and

Weekends, from 9.00am to 12.30pm

The service is closed on Christmas and New Year’s Day. Patients are requested to attend A&E at these times.

This service is for those who have had an eye accident in the last 48 hours and require treatment. Please call 0118 322 8855. You will be put through to an eye trained member of staff who will be able to advise whether the eye casualty department is the appropriate place for treatment. If it is, you will be provided with a time slot to attend. The eye casualty department treats the following eye injuries:

  • Chemical liquids splashed into the eye
  • Cuts or lacerations to the eye lids
  • Penetrating eye injury
  • Sudden, painful eye causing sickness and feeling unwell
  • A red, painful eye after surgery
  • Rapid loss of vision following corneal graft surgery
  • Shadow/curtain across vision, increase in flashing lights/floaters
  • Red, painful eye associated with contact lens wear
  • Sudden painless loss of vision
  • If you are a regular patient at the eye casualty department and are concerned about your eye.

The eye casualty department is not appropriate for conditions including conjunctivitis and styes. If you require treatment for a common eye ailment such as these, please go to your nearest pharmacy or make an appointment to see your GP. If it is out of hours, please call 111 to arrange to go to a primary care centre or alternatively you can attend a walk-in clinic.

Please note the emergency eye treatment clinic at King Edward VII hospital is provided by EBPCOOH Service. The on-call opthalmologist and eye casualty department is provided by Berkshire Healthcare Foundation Trust.