Search

Search the guidance

Make your search more specific...

Guidance areas

Search

As well as searching, you can browse the Guidance.

  • You must follow the law on Health and Safety at Work.
  • You must maintain a hygienic and safe practice environment.
  • You must deliver care to your patients in a safe environment.
  • You should comply with workplace safety policies and procedures.
  • You should contribute to clinical audits.
  • You should report any adverse incidents.
B1
This Guidance does not change what you must do under the law.
B2
You must be aware of, and work to, applicable health and safety legislation (refer to COVID-19 guidance).
B3
You must ensure a safe environment in which to deliver care to your patients, and take appropriate action if this is not the case164 (refer to COVID-19 guidance).
B5
You must follow the law on Health and Safety at Work.165, 166 
B6
You must follow the regulations on substances hazardous to health.167, 168 
B7
If you are self-employed or a locum you should also comply with the practice’s reasonable rules and instructions.
B8
You must report any potential risk to patients, yourself or colleagues to your employer or other appropriate person.169
B9
You must work safely and minimise risks to patients,170 including the use of hazard control and infection control. See sections on Infection control and Use and supply of drugs or medicines in optometric practice.
B10
If you are an employee, your employer is responsible for reporting injuries and incidents.171 172 If you are self-employed, the person in control of the premises (which may be you) should report such injuries or incidents. If the responsible person is not present at the time of the incident, you should report it to them at the earliest opportunity.
B11
You should report any adverse incidents. See section on Protecting patients, colleagues and others from harm
B12
You should contribute to workplace clinical audits. See section on Research and audit
B13
You should respond to requests from organisations monitoring public health.
B14
You must act promptly if you think a patient is at risk as a result of: 
  1. lack of care 
  2. inadequate premises or equipment
  3. a colleague who may not be fit to practise
B15
You should maintain your own immunisation and health. See section on Infection control
B16
If you have a health condition that could pose a risk to a patient, you must take appropriate steps to minimise the risk of infection. See section on Infection control

References

165 Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974
166 General Optical Council (2016) Standards of Practice for Optometrists and Dispensing Opticians para 12.1.1  [Accessed 20 Nov 2020]
167 The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002, SI 2677.
168 General Optical Council (2016) Standards of Practice for Optometrists and Dispensing Opticians para 12.1.4 [Accessed 20 Nov 2020]
169 General Optical Council (2016) Standards of Practice for Optometrists and Dispensing Opticians paras 11.3 and 11.5 [Accessed 19 Nov 2020]
170 General Optical Council (2016) Standards of Practice for Optometrists and Dispensing Opticians para 12.1 [Accessed 20 Nov 2020]
171 The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013, SI 1471
172 Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1997, SI 455