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Opchat Magazine LOC News pagesLOC News, April to June 2018

2018 CET claims window opens next month, so make it easier by insuring you are PCSE Online registered.

More high-street eye services will reduce avoidable blindness.
NHS England pilot new post payment verification system
Update on the development of electronic GOS claims systems, the big roll out.
PCSE reports limited supply of GOS forms, can anything else go wrong?
Two new directors appointed to LOCSU Board.
Proposed new NHS regional team structures, yet more change!

2018 CET claims window opens next month, so make it easier by insuring you are PCSE Online registered.

June 2018

The Department of Health & Social Care has confirmed the window for submitting 2018 CET claims is 2 July 2018 to 1 November 2018.

A new process for submitting 2018 CET claims via the PCSE website has been agreed to ensure practices receive an acknowledgement when a claim has been received, and claims are processed and paid in a timely fashion.

LOCSU will be further explaining the new process in detail once the 2018 CET Claim Form has been published by the Department of Health & Social Careand is now available here.

Don't forget to register all your individual practices online with the PCSE.

All practices need to register with PCSE Online to be able to:

• submit CET claims
• order supplies of GOS forms
• contact PCSE with queries
• ensure your practice receives regular communications and updates

For data security reasons, PCSE can only respond to email or phone queries from people who have registered to use PCSE Online (which has also been referred to as the ‘PCSE Portal’).

Online registration enables PCSE to carry out the necessary identification and verification checks – and ensures they only respond to authorised contacts in your practice.

If your practice is already registered on PCSE Online, the main contact/super user can add or amend users to your practice.

LOCSU advise you to check the named contacts that are currently included under your practice registration and update accordingly. Please note, if you have more than one practice you need to register each practice separately.

For more information about PCSE Online, including how to add or amend users in your practice, please visit
If you are having problems registering your practice with PCSE Online, please contact

Don't feel rejected!

The criteria for rejecting GOS claims has not changed but contractors are reminded to check all mandatory information is included on GOS claims before they are submitted and that the correct declaration is signed on sight test claims.

Top 5 reasons GOS claims are rejected:

1. Date of last sight test is left blank on a GOS1 or GOS6.
2. Contractors who are also Performers have signed a GOS1 or GOS6 in the Performer’s declaration section only, rather than the claim section at the bottom as specified on the form.
3. Date of prescription missing on a GOS3.
4. Values not entered in the relevant boxes in the claim section on a GOS3.
5. In forms that have been signed by a patient’s parent/guardian/carer, they have not entered their name below their signature.

How to submit previously rejected GOS forms

• Separate any previously rejected GOS forms from your normal/new GOS form submissions.
• Put a cross (X) in the top right-hand corner of each previously rejected form.
• Batch them together using a separate batch header for each GOS form type.
• Write clearly on the batch header(s) ‘PREVIOUSLY REJECTED’ underneath the name and address for payment box and securely fasten each batch together.
• Return the rejected forms to PCSE at the usual addresses:

Usefull addresses:

Post: Primary Care Support England, PO Box 350, Darlington, DL1 9QN.
Courier: Capita Intelligent Communications, Building 17, Units 2 & 6, Lingfield Point, McMullen Road, DARLINGTON, DL1 1RW.

More high-street eye services will reduce avoidable blindness.

June 2018

High street optical leaders today called on Jeremy Hunt and the NHS to take urgent action to reform eye health services with more than 20 people a month going blind due to appointment delays.

Moving non-emergency services into high-street optical practices could solve the crisis, the Optical Confederation (OC) insists.

The OC, which represents 18,000 optometrists and opticians in England, is calling on health chiefs to take immediate action to end the delays and reduce avoidable sight loss. They echo the call made today by the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Eye Health and Visual Impairment for urgent action following its report into capacity issues.

OC Chair, Fiona Anderson, said: “All eye experts are agreed this is an avoidable crisis and that the current eye health system is failing patients on grand scale. All that is needed is positive leadership and decisive action to end this appointment lottery.

“Moving routine and non-emergency eye health services into optical practices will allow the hospital sector to concentrate on the most urgent and complex cases and reduce avoidable sight loss.”

The APPG's report follows its inquiry into capacity issues in eye care, and the findings are being launched at a Parliamentary reception for MPs today. The inquiry and its calls for urgent action are supported by key organisations including Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB), the Optical Confederation and the Royal College of Ophthalmologists. The inquiry received evidence from 557 patients and 111 organisations.

There were almost 7.6 million ophthalmology appointments in 2016/17 in England, a figure which has increased by more than 10 per cent over the past four years.

Just over half of patients told the inquiry they had experienced at least one appointment or treatment being delayed. Seventy-seven per cent of patients felt this caused them anxiety or stress, and 54 per cent felt it had a negative impact on their day-to-day life.

Patients also expressed concerns about long waiting times, problems securing appointments, a lack of continuity in their care, and poor communication from the clinic.

The report is calling for the Secretary of State for Health, NHS England, the Department of Health and Social Care, local authorities, commissioners, delivery bodies, NHS providers and Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships (STPs) to act now on eye health.

This should include assessing all available capacity - including primary, community and independent care - mapping that against need and then working together to fill the gap. The tools are there. The Optical Confederation and the Local Optical Committee Support Unity (LOCSU) is willing to help in any way they can in implementing these recommendations at national or local level.

NHS England pilot new post payment verification system

June 2018

The Optical Confederation is working with NHS England and the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA) to develop a new method of post payment verification (PPV) of GOS claims.
NHS England and the NHSBSA are piloting this new PPV method in Wessex, West Yorkshire and Harrogate, to gain a better understanding of the level of errors made in claims and provide assurance to NHS England that contractor claims are appropriate.

NHS England has a duty to ensure claims are checked, but the optical sector has had real concerns about the way in which previous PPV exercises have been carried out. The Optical Confederation has therefore worked closely with NHS England and the NHSBSA on the pilot, and will continue to do so, to ensure that the process is fair and equitable to all practices.

NHS England’s interest in piloting the new process is partly driven by a recent unpublished report by the NHS Counter Fraud Authority, which suggested that the optical sector is at significant risk of both patient and contractor fraud. The Optical Confederation has challenged these findings and asked to see the evidence. We have not yet been shown the report, and therefore remain sceptical about its findings.

One might be sceptical as due to resource issues, NHS England have not conducted PPV on a large scale in the optical sector, however they have a duty to ensure claims are checked.

The pilot areas that have been selected are Wessex, West Yorkshire and Harrogate.

Practices taking part in the pilot in these areas will be selected using both a risk-based model and also a random selection. If the pilot is successful this process will be rolled out across England.

NHSBSA have published information on the Post-payment verification of General Ophthalmic Services, including:

a National Briefing

Wessex Pilot Area Briefing

West Yorkshire and Harrogate Pilot Area Briefing

NHSBSA will also publish further information on the scheme here:

Update on the development of electronic GOS claims systems, the big roll out.

May 2018

PCSE have announced that the go live date for the new electronic options for submitting and managing the progress of GOS claims is to be rescheduled.

It was hoped to have these online solutions ready for use in June 2018, after extensive testing. However, although a lot of good progress has been made, further testing is needed to assure ophthalmic stakeholders and providers that the system can be launched successfully.

As a result, the Ophthalmic Project Board has now recommended that the June go-live date will be re-scheduled. The revised go-live date is expected to be in late summer and will be confirmed as soon as possible.

PCSE reports limited supply of GOS forms, can anything else go wrong?

May 2018

PCSE has been advised that third party suppliers currently have limited supply or are out of stock of GOS 1, GOS 3 and GOS 4 forms. As an interim measure, NHS England has agreed that practices can photocopy the current forms. Photocopies can be colour or black and white and should be double-sided.

NHS England has advised that stocks of the new forms are anticipated to be available for PCSE to deliver in June.

Up-to-date information on the availability of these items will be posted on the PCSE website.

Urgent queries regarding out of stock items should be emailed directly to NHS England at

Two new directors appointed to LOCSU Board.

May 2018

LOCSU welcomes the appointment of two new members to its Board of Directors.

Stephen McAndrewStephen McAndrew is replacing Paul Carroll as a FODO-nominated member of the LOCSU Board. In addition, following a publicised recruitment process, Emma Spofforth has joined the LOCSU Board as the LOC representative for the Midlands and East of England region.

Stephen McAndrew (right) is Director NHS Services at Specsavers. He is a healthcare industry professional with 30 years’ experience in senior commercial and business development roles including Business Development Director, Priory Group, Strategic Director – Health, Serco plc and Managing Director, Healthcare Risk Resources International.

Emma Spofforth

Emma Spofforth is an Independent Optometrist working in South East Essex.

She is Secretary of Essex LOC and is the Clinical Governance and Performance Lead for the South Essex Community Glaucoma Service.

Emma has also just been re-elected as the AOP Councillor for the East of England and is an AOP Board member.

Announcing the Board changes, LOCSU Chairman, Alan Tinger, said: “I would like to offer my thanks to Paul following the end of his term of office for his major contribution to our board. His experience and input has been invaluable in helping to formulate LOCSU’s strategy and work programmes.

“I welcome both Stephen and Emma to the board and I am very much looking forward to them both hitting the ground running with their contributions to our Board deliberations.”

Proposed new NHS regional team structures, yet more change!

May 2018

NHS England is undertaking yet another restructure.

Proposals to integrate NHS England and NHS Improvement regional teams in the North, the Midlands and the East, follow the changes already implemented to create new regional teams for the South West, South East and London, and will create seven regions in total.

The proposed new regional teams are:

Midlands: Staffordshire, Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin; Derbyshire; Lincolnshire; Nottinghamshire; Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland; Black Country and West Birmingham; Birmingham and Solihull; Coventry and Warwickshire; and Herefordshire and Worcestershire

Central and East of England: Northamptonshire; Cambridgeshire and Peterborough; Norfolk and Waveney; Suffolk and North East Essex; Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes; Hertfordshire and West Essex; and Mid and South Essex.

North West: Lancashire and South Cumbria; Greater Manchester; and Cheshire and Merseyside.

North East: Cumbria and the North East; West Yorkshire; Humber, Coast and Vale; and South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw.

Joint Regional directors are expected to be identified by early autumn with the new arrangements taking effect very shortly thereafter.

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