28 March 2022

College responds to GOC's call for evidence in review of Opticians Act

We've issued a statement in response to the GOC's call for evidence to review the Opticians Act (1989).

The General Optical Council (GOC) has launched a call for evidence on the need for change to the Opticians Act (1989), and a four month consultation on the associated GOC policies. This review will be one of the most significant developments for optometrists and dispensing opticians in a generation, and the outcomes will have a direct impact on the future of the profession. The review will provide an opportunity to ensure the Opticians Act is up-to-date and addresses the increasing scope of practice within optometry, as the role of the optometrist evolves now, and in the future.

The College will be at the forefront of this review, gathering evidence for our submission, and responding to the consultation on behalf of our members and the profession. We will be asking members for input over the course of the consultation period, and urge all optometrists to get involved to ensure their voices are heard. 

The consultation will cover the following areas:

  • GOC objectives for legislative reform
  • protection of title, restricted activities and registers
  • regulation of businesses
  • testing of sight
  • fitting of contact lenses
  • sale and supply of optical appliances
  • delivery of remote care and technology.

We will be releasing more information on the review, with opportunities for you to respond, over the coming weeks. Please look out for updates in College emails and alerts to be involved. 

Related further reading

How should you market your business while avoiding outlandish claims and falling foul of the Advertising Standards Authority? Juliette Astrup reports.

Visual impairment is common after a stroke, but optometrists can help patients rehabilitate optically and by recommending effective online therapies, writes John Windell.

Which elements are key to the process of shared decision-making between clinician and patient? Georgina Wintersgill reports.