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Supply of drugs in optometric practice

In the course of your professional practice, you may sell or supply:
  1. all medicinal products on a General Sale List (GSL)
  2. all pharmacy (P) medicines.
In an emergency, in the course of your professional practice, you may sell or supply certain POM which are not for parenteral administration. You should check the Optometrists’ Formulary for further details.168 This means there is no provision for you to sell or supply a POM, unless the medication is on The Human Medicine Regulations 2012 list of POM that optometrists may supply in an emergency. Independent prescribing optometrists do not have any additional POM supply privileges.
The drugs that are covered by paragraphs A475 and A476 can only be supplied to patients by a registered optometrist or dispensing optician. There is no provision for you to delegate or supervise this supply.
The POMs that are mentioned in paragraph A476 can be supplied to the patient by a pharmacist on presentation of a signed order from an optometrist without it needing to be an emergency. If you write a signed order for the supply of a drug by a pharmacist you must include your GOC number on the order. You should use standard abbreviations; examples are provided in Annex 2.
You must be aware of the indications, cautions, contraindications and side effects of any drugs you supply.169
You must ask patients about any drug-induced adverse incidents and known drug allergies before supplying them with drugs.170
You must tell patients how to use the drug. You should tell them what to do in the case of an adverse incident.
Healthcare workers can administer POM eye drops in the absence of a prescription, Patient Group Direction (PGD), Patient Specific Direction (PSD) or registrant on the premises. This is subject to the requirement that the medicines were lawfully obtained by a healthcare body, such as a hospital or optical practice. There are no restrictions on who can administer/instil eye drops such as tropicamide and phenylephrine for the purposes of dilating the pupil for screening. If a healthcare worker is instilling eye drops for your patient, you should ensure that the healthcare worker is appropriately trained, and that appropriate supervision arrangements and safe operating systems governing the administration of eye drops are in place. Please see section on Delegation