Primary Health Net
Visit our Public Information Site
Go to my LOC site
covid ocuco Eros

Opchat,PHN's Online Optical magazine

Opchat News:

The Optical Sector's Daily News Magazine
keeping you up to date with new products, professional matters,
industry news and exhibitions
and much more whenever and wherever you want to read it
for today’s news including archived stories.


Thank you to our supporters:


Promote your practice to over 1000 readers daily highlighting specialities and brands:

My Local Optician

Check your practice details

Add specialities and brands for free

Find out how to enhance your listing


7-day Rolling Infection per Day Rate

& Day rolling average infection rate per day

The 7-day average infection rate was 833/day on the day of Lockdown and has reduced to 1419 as of 10th June
Daily infection rates and all other Gov.UK notices published on our PHN Covid Hub

KOMONO – Edge of Paradise Campaign

Komono Bob

This season, KOMONO invites you to reclaim your own paradise.

Blackfin Razor – Technique, Style and Colour

Blackfin Razor Annie

Design has never been so light. Pure titanium Blackfin frames are the state-of-the-art in terms of light weight and technical content. And now they will be even thinner in the new Blackfin Razor line of optical frames.

GRAFTON OPTICAL launch: MASK-it™ Disposable Eye Patches


Disposable, hygienic paper eye patches for effective occlusion: Grafton Optical launch the single-use MASK-it™ in response to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.

#SEETHEWORLD by Nirvan Javan

Nirvan Javan #see the world

With the launch of the new EYEWEAR collections, the Swiss label aims to emphasize the cosmopolitan facet – inspired by the metropolises Tokyo, London, Paris and Chicago.

LIGHTBIRD is flying with its New Seasonal Releases

Lightbird Flower LB020

After the first year debuts and the victory of the Silmo d'Or Première Classe 2019 - the flight continues towards the New Season. LIGHTBIRD, the Bellunese brand's of the designer Corrado Rosson, will introduce the new models’ colours belonging to the first collection Light_Matter.

From LOOK: EXTRA: a new kind of eyewear, for everyone, every day

Look Extra

This LOOK product is designed to be worn under masks and protective eyewear

Many more exciting products on our new products and services pages

Suppliers guide and optical directory

The Latest News

SILMO 202 Confirms dates as from October 2nd to 5th for 2020

SILMO is t is committed to the Protection and Enhancement of the Optical and Eyewear Industry

RSM provides free webinar to vision sector on the effects on patients and the public on vision during the Covid Crisis.

RSM Webinar

Guiding patients and public with eyecare concerns during the Covid-19 Crisis

Mark your calendar now for Glaucoma Awareness Week 29 June – 5 July

For Glaucoma Awareness Week (GAW) 2020, we want more people in the UK than ever before to know just how important it is to look after your eye health 

The effects on people with sight loss and those who have remained undetected during the pandemic are highlighted

A Fight for Sight survey of 325 people with sight loss has shown the serious impact lockdown has had on eye health and wellbeing.

American Academy of Optometry Foundation Announces the 2020 Joe and Janet Barr Early Career Cornea and Contact Lens Research Award Recipient

Didra Sarwat
Sidra Sarwat is a first-year Ph.D. candidate at the School of Optometry and Vision Science, University of New South Wales.

Whilst the infection rate 7-day rolling average continues to be stubbornly high (1419/day compared to 833/day on the day of lockdown) we are of course desperate to return to providing the services that are key to our Nation's eye health.

All primary care contractors (GPs, pharmacists, dentists and optometrists) are asked to take the following actions during "Test and Trace"

Considerations on preparing for possible staff loss during "Test and Trace"

OFNC on the defence about rumoured cliff edge end to payments

The OFNC has today written an open letter to the Health Secretary and optics minister at the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) about recent messaging from NHS England regional offices, suggesting that financial support to help optical practices deal with Covid-19 may stop at the end of June.

Optometrist and author of a number of books shares Anniversary Livery Quiz prize

Window of the Soul By David Baker
Optometrist and author, David Baker, has been named one of two joint runners-up in a VE Day 75th Anniversary Livery Quiz,

Support for recovery and transformation on the High Streets

The High Streets Task Force has launched a range of cutting-edge tools, training, information and advice for high streets across England as part of the Government’s efforts to reopen safely from 15 June and support their recovery.

Vision UK becomes Covid-19 Fatality

Matt Broom Vision UK closing
It is with great sadness PHN has been informed of its impending closure of Vision UK as of the 31/07/2020.

ABDO position on GOC CET Consultation Stage

The GOC is currently consulting on proposals to introduce changes to the Continuing Education and Training (CET) scheme to make it more flexible and less prescriptive, allowing registrants greater freedom to undertake learning and development which is relevant to their own personal scope of practice.

Whole home testing rolled out to all care homes in England

Adult care homes for under-65s, including those with learning disabilities or mental health problems will be offered testing, regardless of whether residents have symptoms. See the PHN Covid Hub

Myopia management certificate launched by BCLA

BCLA Myopia Certify
A newly-launched certificate in myopia management will allow eye care professionals to translate the latest global research findings to their clinical practice as part of a drive to boost awareness of the “ticking timebomb” of a global eye health epidemic.

COVID19 – meeting the eye health needs of vulnerable individuals during the next stages of the pandemic

A statement by the Optical Confederation Domiciliary Eyecare Committee (DEC) Domiciliary eye care is a specialised area of optometry and optics experienced in dealing with high risk patients (including those being barrier-nursed) and rigorous infection control.

College responds to reports of practices resuming routine eye care

We (The College) recognise that there is considerable frustration at reports suggesting that some practices may be breaking national guidelines and providing routine eye care appointments that are not essential or urgent/emergency.

OFNC statement: resumption of General Ophthalmic Services in England

The OFNC has today had further discussions with NHS England on arrangements for when and how optical practices can provide more face-to-face eye care. Despite recent speculation, NHS England has confirmed that a date for full resumption of face-to-face GOS has not yet been agreed.

Phosphorus Announces FDA Approval Of At-Home Saliva Test For COVID-19 in US

Phosphorus announced today that the FDA granted the Emergency Use Authorization request for its saliva test for COVID-19 that features at-home sample collection. in the US.

Nystagmus Network announces Awareness Day in 2020

It’s national and international Nystagmus Awareness Day on Saturday 20 June 2020. We may all be staying at home this year, but we can still mark the day and raise awareness to ensure that the 1 in 1,000 adults and children living with nystagmus enjoys a greater understanding of their condition and a better quality of life as a result.

Blind and partially sighted voters still struggle to cast their vote in secret at elections, says a leading sight loss charity.

RNIB Scotland is urging MSPs to back key amendments to the Electoral Reform Bill being debated in the Scottish Parliament today [Wednesday, June 3rd]. It says these would allow people with sight loss to cast their ballot without the assistance of anyone else.

Dentistry to reopen, car showrooms are open and schools are back but optics... only essential optometry

Are some of those groups and indeed the relaxation on lockdown too early? There is a consensus that the one major mistake that has created higher infection and death rates in the UK was to delay the decision on lockdown made on 23rd March 2020. Could we be repeating an error? We look at infection curves, test and trace and the value NHS England places on our services

LOCSU introduces two further clinical pathways to broaden primary care offer

Following the launch of The Maculopathy Referral Filtering (see below) LOCSU announces 2 further pathways

New AOP Infection control and prevention certificate

On Wednesday 3 June, 12pm, The Association of Optometrists (AOP) will launch a new AOP Infection control and prevention certificate.

OFNC STATEMENT: Resumption of General Dentist Services – Implications for OPTICAL SERVICES IN ENGLAND

On 28 May NHS England announced that it was asking all dental practices in England to commence opening from Monday 8 June for face-to-face care, subject to having the necessary infection control measures and PPE in place.

UK reaches 200,000 coronavirus testing capacity target a day early

Following the rapid expansion of coronavirus testing, the UK reached the 200,000 capacity target on Saturday 30 May, including capacity for 40,000 antibody tests a day

Member of the Scottish Youth Parliament, to raise awreness of sight loss.

A 24 year-old woman from Greenock is pushing forward the next steps in a campaign she has started to raise awareness of sight loss.


The American Academy of Optometry Foundation announces the eleven recipients of the 2020 William C. Ezell Fellowships. 

GOC launches consultation on Continuing Education and Training scheme

The General Optical Council (GOC) has launched a consultation on proposals to introduce changes to its Continuing Education and Training (CET) scheme.

Now it's Drive-thru IOP Testing in some US Practices, could it happen here in the UK?

American Ophthalmologist Shares Experience Implementing Drive-Through IOP Checks Into Practice

Surgeon’s safety eyewear issue solved

Bav Shergill
Good vision, alongside full protection from inhalation during cauterisation, was the challenge for a leading Consultant Dermatologist and Mohs surgeon in treating patients who might be infected with Covid 19.

OFNC STATEMENT: Meeting essential eye care needs during the Pandemic

Today May 27th we received the following statement on the definition of essential eye care in NHS England’s letter of 1 April :

New PCA and road map for Scotland as Lockdown set to ease

The Scottish government has published a new PCA, which includes an update on continued financial support for community optometry. PCA's and Roadmaps

PHN permanent page listing all Optical Companies providing emergency supplies and services to practices during pandemic.

Covid List

During the Pandemic you will be able to find a list of all suppliers and their contact details who at the time of publishing are available to provide goods, services or verbal help to practices requiring help during emergency provision.


More news here and archived news quarter back by quarter or tap on the upper coloured tabs to go to your favourite story topics. Or use the Search box above

Latest Briefings

Our latest business briefings:


We have a series of briefings revised in May 2013 on VAT:

VAT Briefings Introduction


Paying Too Much VAT Out of Net Profits?

Advantages of Stock Modules for VAT

Practice Management Software

A series of briefings revised in May 2013 on the uses of practice management software:

Practice Management Software: Introduction

Practice Management Software: The Basics

Practice Management Software: Advanced Briefing

Practice Management Software: The Paperless Practice

Improving Business Strengths

Go to our Improving Business Strengths Briefing

Keeping Stock Levels to a Minimum

Go to our Keeping Stock Levels to a Minimum Briefing

Contact Lens Report

EUROMCONTACT Contact Lens Report

Report on Drivers' Vision

Report on Drivers' Vision: A report published by The European Council of Optometry and Optics (ECOO)

The Bribery Act

The Bribery Act: Optical Confederation Guidance


Check out our LOC information and LOCSU secure pages:

LOC Briefing home

LOCSU (LOC Support Unit)

LOCSU Secure Entry Page

A guide to your LOC on the web

Ophthalmology Outpatient Tariffs 2013/14


Jobs online
Primary Health Net
Privacy Policy