COVID-19 distancing requirements have led to serious restrictions on direct clinical observation. This has made it challenging for optometrists training to become independent prescribers to fulfil the hospital clinic sessions required for logbook completion.
This week, the GOC agreed to the College’s proposal for a more flexible approach to meeting logbook requirements. Trainees must continue to complete a minimum of 24 x 3-hour sessions in the HES or specialist general practice. However, these can now be divided into:
- a minimum of 11 x 3-hour of face-to-face sessions (45%)
- a maximum of 13 x 3-hour sessions in remote or virtual clinics (55%)
All remote or virtual sessions must generate evidence of activities relevant to the GOC-specified learning outcomes and will need to be signed off by a designated ophthalmologist, approved by the College.
The College is delighted that this adjustment has been agreed, as it will increase the accessibility of hospital clinical training provision by using technology that has become commonplace during the pandemic, and will help to increase the numbers of optometrists able to complete their training to offer prescribing services.