Vision Impairment Information and Guidance for the Family


Being visually impaired is when a person experiences sight loss that cannot be corrected using glasses or contact lenses. In the UK alone, an estimated 2 million people are living with reduced eyesight. This includes concerns such as glaucoma, cataracts, and stroke related eye issues. In addition, 365,000 UK residents are registered as blind or partially sighted.


The majority of people have loss of sight as a result of growing older, although it is not foreseeable. More commonly vision impairment is the result of an eye condition or problem. Among these are age-related macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy. For individuals with sight issues an optical appointment every two years is important to monitor the condition.


It can be incredibly scary and stressful to experience vision loss. A persons vision as one of the primary ways of processing and understanding the world around us.  A gradual or sudden shift in vision can be incredibly challenging , especially at first. However there are products available to help ease this transition and help maintain a lever of independence.


Regardless of whether you were born with vision challenges or they occurred later in life as a result of accident, ageing, or illness, you are likely entitled to many benefits, including welfare, free optical appointments, and travel expenses.



The Impact on Daily Life

Sight loss has a profound impact on daily life. Reading, working, driving, and walking around all become far more difficult with vision impairment. Tasks that seem simple to those without vision concerns can be quite difficult for those who suffer from vision impairment. Fortunately, there are many aids and assistive devices available to make life easier for those with visual impairment.


It would be nearly impossible to address all the ways visual impairment can impact a person’s life. However, there are some assistive devices that seem to be most commonly used to help those with vision concerns lead more independent and active lives. For example the Aidapt Pill Bottle Opener or the Handsfree Craft Magnifier.


Audio labeling systems help those with vision issues identify specific items around the home. Taking medication when visually impaired cane also be quite difficult. Braille pill organizers can make this much simpler. In addition, large format devices such as big button phones and large TV remotes also make daily living easier. For visually impaired individuals who enjoy reading, crossword puzzles, or other close work, a standing page magnifier can be a great help. Finally, products like talking clocks and watches help people with sight issues retain independence.


Going for a walk can also be difficult for those with vision concerns. Not only is it difficult to navigate in unfamiliar areas, other people in the area are likely unaware of your vision issues which can lead to confusion. Devices such as walking sticks and guide sticks help retain independence, boost confidence, and alert others to your visual needs.


Here at Aids4mobility we know vision loss can be very traumatic and confusing, but with support and appropriate assistive devices we believe it is  possible to retain independence and live a full, active life.


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More information

Please note: VAT is removed in the checkout process

In the UK, disabled people do not have to pay VAT when buying certain disability aids and services (This can be claimed by friend or family member purchasing on their behalf). Not everything supplied to disabled people is necessarily zero-rated for VAT. Goods and services on which you do not have to pay VAT are usually known as 'zero-rated' or 'eligible for VAT relief.

Who is eligible for VAT relief?

You must be 'chronically sick or disabled' to qualify for VAT relief. The HMRC comment on this is as follows. A person is 'chronically sick or disabled' if they either:

VAT Relief on our Disability Aids

All products on the Aids for Mobility website are flagged with an option to claim VAT relief during Checkout if it applies to that item. When you add a zero-rated product or service to your Basket, you will be asked to tick a checkbox to confirm that you, or the person for whom you are buying the item, are eligible for VAT Relief.

How VAT relief works

If you are claiming VAT Relief you will be asked to complete an extra few questions during Checkout, where we will ask you to provide brief details of your disability and confirmation that the product is for 'personal or domestic use'. We will keep a record of this declaration along with your order details. You can then buy the product(s) in your Basket at a price that excludes VAT. You will be asked to make this declaration each time you place an order that includes zero-rated products. It is a legal requirement that we record this information for every order, and we apologise for the inconvenience.

More information from HMRC

You can find out more about VAT Relief for disabled people on the HM Revenue and Customs website. If you cannot find the answer to your questions there or would prefer to speak to an adviser, you can call their Helpline on 0845 302 02 03.

The helpline is open from 8.00 am to 5.00 pm, Monday to Friday. (Closed weekends and bank holidays).