A UK-wide multi-professional eye care workforce supply and demand data modelling project

The College of Optometrists is leading a sector-wide and UK-wide, multi-professional eye care workforce supply and demand data modelling project. We want to know what workforce we need, where we need it and what capabilities it needs. 

Phase One will model:

  1. the current eye care workforce – and predicted 5-10 year workforce – based on current trends
  2. the prevalence of 14 eye condition groups (including approximately 120 specific eye conditions)
  3. the predicted prevalence of these conditions in the next 5-10 years.

The model will allow NHS commissioners to:

  1. identify current local population eye care needs and predicted changes
  2. optimise existing workforce capacity and capability to meet population and patient care needs
  3. identify priorities for future workforce education, training and development to support new models of care
  4. support evidence-based decision-making on workforce planning, investment, training, and deployment, and cost-effective commissioning.

York Health Economics Consortium (YHEC) have been appointed to conduct the modelling work.

The project is being co-funded by:


Advisory group

The College has formed an Advisory Group - consisting of both project funders and other stakeholders in the eye care sector to advise and steer the project:

  • Association of British Dispensing Opticians (ABDO)
  • Association of Optometrists (AOP)
  • British & Irish Orthoptic Society (BIOS)
  • Department of Health Northern Ireland (DoH, NI)
  • Federation of Optometrists and Dispensing Opticians (FODO)
  • General Optical Council (GOC)
  • Health Education and Improvement Wales (HEIW)
  • Local Optical Committee Support Unit (LOCSU)
  • NHS England
  • Royal College of Nursing (RCN)
  • The College of Optometrists
  • The Royal College of Ophthalmologists (RCOphth)
  • Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB)
  • Scottish Government
  • Welsh Government

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