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Opchat Magazine Professional Matters PagesProfessional Matters News, January to March 2020

Optometry/Dispensing

For Ophthalmology Section Page Click Here.

PSA reports on GOC improving triage process
Scotland 2020 GOS Mandatory Training for Optometrists/OMPs
Domiciliary Providers asked to provide answers to anomymous questionaire
RCOphth published new strategic plan for 2020 to 2022
GOC erases Cambridgeshire based dispensing optician
Scottish Opticians underusing code?
Workforce survey for Scottish optometrists
GOC position on proposed apprenticeship standard, a further statement issued during consultation period.
Archived News from October to December 2019


PSA reports on GOC improving triage process

January 2020

The Professional Standards Authority (PSA) has produced a short report showing how its work contributes to protecting the public, and provides a narrative informed by the various statistics produced as part of the Authority’s processes.

The data used includes statistics arising from the PSA’s review of regulators (both their performance as part of annual reviews as well as scrutiny of their final fitness to practise decisions).

Included in the report is reference to the introduction by the General Optical Council (GOC) of a new triage process to filter out concerns that cannot be taken forward by the regulator. In an initial review the PSA found issues in nearly a third of the sample of triage cases it reviewed and had no reason to think the sample was not representative.

In response, the GOC made changes to its triage process as well as developing a new quality assurance measure. These included:

• Recruiting new staff (a triage officer and senior triage officer)
• Making changes to its triage process ‘case plan’
• Implementing acceptance criteria
• Amending its referral form to make it easier to understand.

The GOC also developed quality-assurance measures about when to and when not to open a case at the triage stage, including:

• A recommendation by the triage officer
• Decision by the senior triage officer
• Right to request a review (to be reviewed by the director of casework)
• Review by an investigations manager when opening a full investigation
• Sample control check of decisions not to open a case
• An independent audit of a sample of decisions.

Subsequently, the PSA carried out a targeted check to see what improvements had been made and examined 25 cases closed at this stage in the fitness to practise process and found that the concerns it had identified had been addressed.

The PSA also did not identify any cases closed where there was not a good reason to close them; or that significant issues of the complaint had not been considered. The GOC having made positive changes to the process then agreed to carry out an audit about how it is using its acceptance criteria which the PSA will look at as part of its next review.

Scotland 2020 GOS Mandatory Training for Optometrists/OMPs

January 2020

As part of The National Health Service (General Ophthalmic Services) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2018, there is an annual requirement for all Optometrists and OMPs working under GOS in Scotland to satisfactorily complete an element of mandatory training, provided by NES.

For the second year (running January 2020 to December 2020), this will take the form of an online TURAS Learn module on an Introduction to Consent and Capacity in Optometric Practice in Scotland.

The module is split into two sections (Consent/Capacity): you must complete both sections to complete your mandatory training. Two GOC CET points are available for completing both sections and passing the corresponding MCQs.

Reminder: Following a communication from the Scottish Government in PCA(O)2019(3), practitioners no longer need to submit their mandatory annual training completion certificate to the NHS Board(s) with whom they are listed to provide GOS. However, please ensure your primary host health board is correctly listed on Turas.

Domiciliary Providers asked to provide answers to anomymous questionaire

January 2020

Domiciliary Eye Care Committee safety questionnaire

The Domiciliary Eye Care Committee (DEC) on behalf of the Optical Confederation is keen to ascertain the nature and extent to which physical barriers and concerns about provider safety prevent or impede the provision of domiciliary eye care.

Could you assist DEC by completing a short questionnaire and sharing it with your colleagues? This anonymous questionnaire should only take five minutes to complete with the deadline being midnight on Friday 31 January.

RCOphth published new strategic plan for 2020 to 2022

January 2020

The Royal College of Ophthalmologists believes that everyone should have access to high quality eye care.

The new RCOphth Strategic Plan 2020-2022 directs and prioritises key policy and campaign activities over the next three years. The way NHS care is provided and the treatments available to improve patients’ lives have changed almost beyond recognition since our charter first set out our obligations as a medical royal college in 1988. Read the full plan here

GOC erases Cambridgeshire based dispensing optician

January 2020

The General Optical Council (GOC), the UK regulator for optometrists and dispensing opticians, has decided to erase Barry Church, a dispensing optician based in Cambridgeshire, from its register. He will be unable to practise as a dispensing optician.

A GOC Fitness to Practise Committee found his fitness to practise impaired by reason of misconduct relating to his conviction of theft and failing to engage with a GOC investigation.
Mr Church had until 9 January 2020 to appeal his erasure.

Scottish Opticians underusing code?

January 2020

A recent Scottish Payment Verification meeting has highlighted that new codes 2.9 and 3.0 are most likely being underused.

Code 2.9 is for cataract counselling and can be used following a primary examination to give advice about cataract surgery when referring a patient. Code 3.0 is the complex needs code and is used when bringing a patient back for a consultation, if the primary examination could not be conducted in full on the day or if extra time was taken to complete a primary eye examination on that day.

Find out more on the OS website

Workforce survey for Scottish optometrists

January 2020

Optometry Scotland has developed a survey to provide the Scottish government and other stakeholders with information on the status of the current optometry workforce.

It takes about three minutes to complete and as an incentive to do so, participants will be entered into a prize draw to win one of four Amazon vouchers worth £50.

The survey can be completed here or on the OS website and will be open until 31 January 2020.

GOC position on proposed apprenticeship standard, a further statement issued during consultation period.

January 2020

The GOC has issued a statement in response to concerns that have been raised about the proposed apprenticeship standard.

The GOC emphasises that it is responsible for protecting the public by setting the standards for all optometry programmes in the UK and for approving and quality assuring these programmes. It goes on to state:

“Any programme of education and training designed to meet the optometry apprenticeship standard would require our approval in the usual way for students undertaking the programme to be able to join our register and practise as an optometrist.

“Through our involvement with the Trailblazer Group involved in developing the proposed optometry apprenticeship standard, we have ensured that the Group is aware that the standard must be consistent with our requirements and that any programme of education and training designed to meet the standard would then require our approval.

“We hope that this clarifies our role and provides assurance that any new programmes designed to meet the proposed optometry apprenticeship standard would be subject to the same scrutiny as any other new route to registration.”

Responses to the optometrist degree apprenticeship standard consultation close on 10 January.

Readers can remind themselves of our breaking story in our November pages here

 

 
 
 
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