JULY 2015
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Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Enhanced roles in focus
Product spotlight
Continuing Education & Training
An overview of paediatric dispensing
Part 1: Frames and faces
by Andrew Cripps
CET Answers
Prescription lenses for sport
by Tanya Storey
Case report
Nystagmus: going the extra mile
by Hannah Price
Marketing to mums
by Antonia Chitty
...with Barry Duncan
Expressions of youth
Consultation Day with the Areas
ABDO Conference preview
BCLA report
DO Dispatches
Black Arts
by ABDO president, Peter Black
answered by Kim Devlin
Jobs & Notices
Rodenstock Model
R5290A, from the
Colorado Kids Collection
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
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Complete Glazed
Packages Available
Free case
with every frame
For kids aged
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New trendy frame designs
Practical smaller styles - perfect
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Different eye shapes in
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For more information
Tel: 01452 510321
Email: [email protected]
View online:
The Professional Journal of the Association
of British Dispensing Opticians
Assistant Editor
Managing Editor
Design and Production
Admin. Manager
Sir Anthony Garrett CBE HonFBDO
Jane Burnand
Nicky Collinson BA (Hons)
[email protected]
Rosslyn Argent BA (Hons)
[email protected]
Deanne Gray
[email protected]
0781 2734717
[email protected]
£150, including postage
Apply to
Tom Veti
Association of British Dispensing Opticians
Godmersham Park, Godmersham, Kent CT4 7DT
CET Coordinator
01227 733922
[email protected]
Paula Stevens MA ODE BSc(Hons)
MCOptom FBDO CL (Hons)AD SMC(Tech)
ABDO CET, 5 Kingsford Business Centre, Layer Road,
Kingsford, Colchester CO2 0HT
or email
01206 734155
[email protected]
[email protected]
Joanne Abbott BSc(Hons) FBDO SMC(Tech)
Keith Cavaye FBDO (Hons) CL FBCLA
Andrew Cripps FBDO (Hons) PG Cert HE FHEA
Kim Devlin FBDO (Hons) CL
Stephen Freeman BSc(Hons) MCOptom FBDO (Hons) Cert Ed
Abilene Macdonald Grute FBDO (Hons) SLD (Hons) LVA Dip Dist Ed Cert Ed
Richard Harsant FBDO (Hons) CL (Hons) LVA
Andrew Keirl BOptom (Hons) MCOptom FBDO
Angela McNamee BSc(Hons) MCOptom FBDO (Hons) CL FBCLA Cert Ed
Linda Rapley BSc FCOptom
DO Dispatches
At our Consultation Day with the Areas
held on 20 May, Barry Duncan and I outlined
proposals to give new wide-ranging
responsibilities to ABDO Area committees (see our report
on pages 34-35).
Amongst ideas considered was the appointment of a clinical
lead in each Area, who would focus on the vital and growing
topic of local commissioning and the role that dispensing
optician practice owners and individual members can play in
the delivery of new and enhanced services. This is coupled
with the need for Areas to make every effort to encourage
and support members in joining and participating in the work
of local optical committees (LOCs).
There is a steadily growing cohort of DOs taking on
responsibilities within LOCs. This is to be greatly welcomed
but the picture is still rather patchy. It is hoped that Areas will
take on the responsibility of monitoring LOCs and help and
encourage members to get involved where gaps exist.
These proposals, added to the existing roles in the provision
of CET, student revision classes and social activities, mean that
Area committees will have a strong and vital role in the future.
A board level working party has been established and will report
back to the next Consultation Day with the Areas in November
with recommendations on how to take these ideas forward.
Sir Anthony Garrett
ABDO general secretary
Richard Crook FBDO
Kim Devlin FBDO (Hons) CL
Kevin Gutsell FBDO (Hons) SLD
Ros Kirk FBDO
Angela McNamee BSc(Hons) MCOptom FBDO (Hons) CL FBCLA Cert Ed
ABDO, 199 Gloucester Terrace, London W2 6LD
Lavenham Press, Lavenham, Suffolk CO10 9RN
© ABDO: No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored
in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means
whatever without the written prior permission of the publishers
Dispensing Optics welcomes contributions for possible
editorial publication. However, contributors warrant to the
publishers that they own all rights to illustrations, artwork or
photographs submitted and also to copy which is factually
accurate and does not infringe any other party’s rights
ISSN 0954 3201
ABDO Board certification
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Our monthly column from the ABDO president
Demanding customers or
customer demand?
ong-time readers of Black Arts
may have noticed it’s been a while
since I’ve recanted any tales of my
local pub, principally because it
has been closed for over 18
months having gone out of business five
times in as many years. After more than 100
years as an ‘inn’ the new owners have
converted it to a ‘bistro’ and the initial signs
were that they had the right idea about
their potential local market.
Being opposite a school it was an
obvious move to start selling posh coffee to
parents at school drop-off and pick-up
times, and the area has been crying out for
a better food offering, yet within weeks it
was obvious all was not well at the inn.
Whilst yummy mummies are welcomed
for coffee before they pick up the children,
the welcome is somewhat less warm if
parents turn up after school with the kids in
tow, largely because this time eats into the
precious OAP happy hour of buy-one-getone-free meals from 4pm until 5pm. Clearly
thrifty War Babies from the ‘waste not want
not’ generation can be persuaded to eat at
the most ridiculous times if the offer is
cheap enough – but all too often those of
us with good money to spend are ignored.
There is no kids’ menu or family offer
despite nearly 500 children and their
parents passing the pub five days per week
in term time, almost all of whom live within
a few miles.
When I tried to book, last orders for
food was 7.30pm, yet there is clearly
demand for a later sitting, especially as
Ethel and Ernie and their coach load of
friends usually arrive at 4.58pm to place
their half price order and are still eating
two hours later. Time will tell whether our
new bistro will adapt to satisfy the needs of
its potential customers, or will it remain
stuck with only low price sales and little
else? Discounting services to create
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
demand at unpopular times is fair enough if
it generates incremental sales that sweat a
business’s assets just a little bit more.
However, relying solely on this is a
dangerous game if there are obviously
customers willing to pay more for a better
service or a more convenient time.
There are clearly parallels between
restaurants and opticians. How do we price
our services to even out the peaks and
troughs of demand to maximise the
utilisation of our assets and maximise our
attraction to customers with different levels
of price sensitivity? And are we open at the
times most convenient to our customers?
Certainly locum contact lens opticians are
reporting very high demand (and fees) for
their services on Saturdays, Sundays and
late hours trading days, however, they also
report it is difficult to get work on other
days. It is quite obvious, when you think
about it, why this is.
Most contact lens patients are of
working age, or are at school, college or
university and the times they can attend
are often limited to weekends and ‘after
hours’. So I’m afraid I had little sympathy
for a colleague who is not prepared to work
Saturdays or Sundays complaining she
found it very difficult to get work recently.
However, I was more concerned that she
was considering opening her own practice
in order that she could please herself with
regard to the hours she worked!
It is a simple fact that businesses that
do not supply enough customers with the
products and services they demand at a
time that is convenient for them are
unlikely to survive, and will certainly not
thrive in the future. This unfortunately
seems to be the plight of some of the
independent sector. The fact is standard
‘office hours’ with perhaps Saturday
mornings, are only likely to be attractive to
people who have time on their hands and,
as such, business is likely to be limited to
patients who are mainly retired or
unemployed. With a business model like this
it is fruitless to complain that your patient
base is ageing and you don’t get many new
customers. It is equally fruitless to engage
in marketing activities directed at students
or working adults if the business is not able
to offer services at a time convenient to them.
I often hear independent optometrists
and dispensing optician practice owners
complain about competitors offering cut
price or free eye examinations, and whilst I
agree that the NHS (i.e. taxpayer) should
not have to pay more than a private
customer, I fear many independents are
missing the point. The call for the same
rules to be applied for sight tests as it is for
GOS3 Vouchers, namely that practices can
only claim the lower of the NHS fee or the
prevailing lowest private rate, may well save
the NHS a few million pounds until
practices with low private fees put their
prices up to equal NHS rates. It will not,
however, be the panacea many
independents think it is in terms of their
long-term survival and success.
All practices, whether independent or
otherwise, need to maximise the utilisation
of their assets to differentiate themselves
from their competitors. We can learn a lot
from other retail and healthcare businesses
and be imaginative in our marketing
without the need for colossal advertising
budgets. The example above of half price
meals for early birds could easily be
extended to sight tests and has the
considerable advantage that the day starts
with higher spending private patients rather
than their lower spending NHS
counterparts. My dentist offers a five per
cent discount if both husband and wife
attend the same practice, and I know plenty
of businesses that offer incentives to
customers who ‘recommend a friend’. Many
marketing activities, such as telephoning
patients when they are due their next
appointment, not only result in
appointments and sales, they are seen as
great service too.
In the great scheme of things, eyecare is an
irrelevance, a mere dimple on a pimple on
the fat rump of the mighty beast that is the
NHS. In secondary care, eyecare
expenditure pales into insignificance
compared to cardiology or cancer. In
primary care, community optometry
services represent stunning value for money
for the NHS despite it being pretty much
the only remaining on demand service with
an uncapped budget, provided almost
exclusively by private contractors.
Despite current debate about whether it
is ethical for private companies to profit
from the NHS, it is my belief that the NHS
could get even better value for both
patients and the taxpayer if only some
common sense were applied and more
services moved into community based
primary care.
Local eyecare commissioning is a
scandalous waste of NHS resources and it is
surely time for a re-think.
In England, over and above the national
General Ophthalmic Services contract there
are up to 18 locally enhanced services that
should be commissioned by the 211 clinical
commissioning groups (CCGs). Currently
only a small handful of larger CCGs have
managed to commission all of these
services. This is no surprise. If each service
required only one meeting per service per
area to scope, define, negotiate payment
and implement it would take around 4,000
meetings. In practice, such negotiations are
likely to take many more than one meeting,
often as many as 10. This could mean a
total of 40,000 meetings to negotiate
contracts – a scandalous waste of time and
money when you consider there are less
than 7,000 community optical practices
and only 14,000 registered optometrists
across the whole UK.
In many cases, this means patients have
no easily accessible NHS service available
to them, and in some cases, especially low
vision, no service at all. This is leading to
increased sight loss, and increased isolation
of vulnerable groups who have to live with
sight loss every day. A nationally, or at least
regionally commissioned eye health service
is required to create value for the NHS and
tax payers and improve accessibility for
patients by removing the postcode lottery.
At a recent lecture from Moorfields’
ophthalmic accident and emergency
department I learned that blepharitis and
dry eye account for around a third of cases.
Itchy eyelids and uncomfortable eyes can
hardly be considered accidents or
emergencies can they? Away from large
urban areas lucky enough to have dedicated
eye units, I believe that eye-related
conditions account for between three and
five per cent of all A&E attendance, yet
according to the statistics produced by
Moorfields around a third of these
conditions could be handled by a dispensing
optician or pharmacist, two thirds by an
ordinary community optometrist and over
four fifths by an independent prescribing
optometrist practitioner.
Now consider what happens to the
majority of eye patients, with non-sight
threatening, non-emergency conditions
when they attend A&E. Every time a patient
appears with chest pains, pregnancy
complications or a broken leg, our poor dry
eye patient goes to the back of the queue.
Routine eye conditions might just be the
reason most A&E departments are missing
their four-hour target most of the time.
Moving minor eye conditions and even
some emergencies towards community
opticians would save the NHS money and
enable politicians to report some good
news on A&E targets for a change.
Reducing the burden on A&E by just
one or two per cent could be sufficient to
remove the straw that is breaking the
camel’s back if only politicians and NHS
leaders could apply some common sense.
However, if this is to become reality, as
principal triage practitioners dispensing
opticians need to step up to the plate, get
involved in minor eye conditions in practice
and get involved locally to make it happen
New! ABDO now has an official page
on Facebook. Find us at www.facebook.
You can also find news for ABDO
members on Twitter @MembershipAbdo
and more general news from the world
of eyes at @ABDONews
New this month on Eyecare FAQ,
you’ll find an infographic to share on
diabetes, FAQ on the disease as well as
an optical lingo bingo card full of related
words. How many are you using every day,
and do patients know what you mean?
You can use any of the FAQ answers
and images on your own blog or
website. Follow, like and share these
useful resources on your practice and
personal social media channels, to help
the public learn about eyecare and
promote the role of the registered
dispensing optician.
Get involved with Eyecare FAQ,
ABDO’s campaign to help consumers
learn more about looking after their eyes,
and the role of the registered dispensing
optician. Eyecare FAQ is also at:
• or visit the website,
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Email [email protected] or
write to Dispensing Optics, PO Box
233, Crowborough TN27 3AB
I am in the process of writing a history of the binocular
ophthalmoscope with a colleague.
We have come across such an instrument designed by the
ophthalmologist, Andrew Rugg-Gunn, but would like to
know more about the company who made it. The
manufacturers were SP Holloway Dispensing Opticians of
14a Henrietta Street, W1.
Mr Rugg-Gunn presented his instrument at the
Ophthalmological Society of the UK congress in 1949. SP
Holloway also made an ophthalmoscope called the Twin-Beam.
If any reader has information on this company, I would be
very pleased to hear from them.
Richard Keeler FRCOphth (Hon)
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contributions prior to publication.
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information can be found at
Kevin, Jo and James with fellow new FEAOOs
Jo Underwood, James Russell and Kevin Milsom have become the first
dispensing opticians to be admitted to the European Academy of
Optometry and Optics (EAOO) as Fellows.
The EAOO welcomed a record 15 new members into Fellowship at its
annual conference dinner in Budapest in May, including UK optometrists
Dr Frank Eperjesi, Dr Amit Jinabhai and Nick Rumney. Fellowship is
awarded to members who have made a significant contribution to
optometry and/or optics at a local, national or international level.
Budapest 2015 was the Academy’s most successful conference so far,
attracting more than 300 optometrists, dispensing opticians and contact
lens opticians from 44 countries.
Jo Underwood, who is ABDO College principal, said: “I believe
passionately in optical professionals working together to share knowledge,
harmonise the profession and break down barriers. I consider this to be
the role of the Academy, and this is the reason why I am a member, why I
sit on its education committee and why I applied for Academy Fellowship.
“I was honoured to be considered a suitable candidate for Academy
Fellowship and I would encourage everyone to consider applying in order
to consolidate their personal achievements, and to strengthen the Academy
and its aims,” Jo added.
Rob with Henry wearing his new bifocals
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Bifocal glasses prescribed by Vision Express in Horsham, Sussex, have made
an “amazing” difference to a 12-year-old boy, Henry, who has Down’s
Henry’s Mum, Caroline, said: “He took to the bifocals really quickly and is
starting to read. He still needs lots of encouragement but now wants to read
his key words every day. His handwriting is becoming clearer because he can
see what he is writing.”
Dispensing optician, Rob Eatwell, who fitted Henry’s new glasses, said: “We
try to make children feel as welcome as possible. It’s really important to get a
rapport going. Bifocals are known to help children with Down’s syndrome
focus better on close work.”
Tests carried out by Dr Margaret Woodhouse at Cardiff University led to
Henry’s prescription for bifocals. Dr Woodhouse said: “Like most children and
young people with Down’s syndrome, Henry is very able if you do things at
the right pace and make it fun.”
Dr Woodhouse has studied vision in children and young people with
Down’s syndrome for 25 years, and has been awarded an OBE for her work.
Now, with funding from Horsham-based charity Action Medical Research, she
is investigating why bifocal glasses seem to be so beneficial for children with
Down’s syndrome.
Dr Woodhouse will be presenting at the ABDO Conference in Manchester
in September., [email protected]
Addressing the issue of (dis)comfort
Offer from Silhouette
Lyndon congratulates Kevin (right)
Optometrist Kevin Thompson has taken
over from Lyndon Taylor as chairman of
the Association of Optometrists (AOP).
Owner of an optical group in the North
East and elected onto the AOP council in
2007, Kevin described his appointment as “a
huge honour and privilege”, adding: “My focus
will be to ensure that the AOP, as the largest
membership organisation in the sector, has
a loud voice in influencing developments.”
Lyndon Taylor has been presented with
an honorary membership to the AOP in
recognition of his years of outstanding
Orasis has reported a positive reaction
from users of its recently upgraded
practice management software.
Advancements to the system include:
improvements to the recall system,
security features, low-cost text-messaging,
taking multiple tenders on the same
payment transaction, and embedded
scanning for a paperless system.
David Francis, software developer for
the company, said: “We understand how
busy it is in practice and we know our
software will save you time and look more
modern in the eyes of your patients. Orasis
will help practices to grow sales, be more
organised, stay competitive and spend
more time with patients.”
Orasis has also launched a complete
management system for eyecare plans,
which runs alongside its existing contact
lens and DD scheme, and is integrating a
print client with iMail allowing printing
and posting to be done for much less than
the price of a second class stamp.
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Silhouette has launched a Summer Style
Shades promotion providing practitioners
who purchase 10 Silhouette rimless
frames with 10 free clip-on Silhouette
Style Shades.
Silhouette Style Shades are clip-ons
that transform any Silhouette rimless
glasses into stylish sunglasses. Point-ofsale material and marketing support is
included in the promotion package. The
promotion runs until 31 July.
The Federation of Manufacturing Opticians
(FMO) has announced that chief executive,
Kevin Gutsell, is to step down from the
organisation for personal reasons.
Barry Dibble, FMO chairman, said: “It
is with sadness that I have accepted
Kevin’s resignation after eight months in
the role. His reasons for doing so are
entirely honourable and I respect this.
Kevin has had a long and distinguished
career in the optical industry and the FMO
board of directors and I wish him well for
the future.”
Alcon showcased its proprietary
HydraGlyde Moisture Matrix technology, a
wetting agent developed to attract and
retain moisture in soft contact lenses,
especially silicone hydrogel contact
lenses, at the British Contact Lens
Association (BCLA) conference in
Liverpool last month.
First introduced in Opti-Free PureMoist
multipurpose disinfecting solution in 2011,
the technology is now expanding to be
included in AOSept Plus with HydraGlide, the
company’s hydrogen peroxide formulation.
“Contact lens discomfort is the most
common cause of complaints among soft
contact lens wearers,” said Dr Inma Perez,
head of professional affairs for Europe, Middle
East and Africa, Alcon. “It can be caused by
both mechanical friction of the contact lens
on the eye and increased evaporation of tears
due to the contact lens interrupting the tear
film. HydraGlide Moisture Matrix embeds
itself on and within the lens surface to
promote moisture and comfort.
“By addressing the issue of (dis)comfort
and adherence, eyecare professionals can
reduce customer complaints and may
significantly increase contact lens wearer
loyalty,” she added.
Martyn Kemp Opticians (MKO), an independent group of opticians in south Yorkshire,
is kick-starting its expansion plans with the relocation of its Stocksbridge practice to
the new £42m Fox Valley Development in north
The new practice, to open in spring 2016, will cover
1,097 sq. ft. – almost four times larger than the existing
premises on Johnson Street in Stocksbridge, which the
company has occupied for more than 20 years.
Pictured from left are MKO managing director, Ron
Dolman, Mark Dransfield, Dransfield Properties’
managing director, with Sandra Davis, Andy Winnard and
Emma Smith.
Luxurious Chopard from De Rigo
Professor Nathan Efron
Former British Contact Lens Association
president, (1996-97) and council member
(1992-99) Professor Nathan Efron, has
been made a Companion of the Order of
Australia in the Australian Queen’s
Birthday honours list – the highest
national honour awarded to Australian
Professor Nathan Efron was honoured
“for eminent service to medicine in the
field of clinical optometry, particularly to
vision correction and corneal physiology,
as an academic, researcher and author, to
the treatment of juvenile diabetes, and
through executive roles with national and
international professional organisations”.
“A highlight of my time in the UK was
my involvement with the BCLA, serving on
council with a wonderful array of
enthusiastic and motivated contact lens
practitioners and industry representatives,
and having the privilege of being elected
for a term as president”, said Professor
Efron, who was professor of clinical
optometry at the University of Manchester
from 1990-95, serving as head of
department from 1992-97.
He is currently a research professor at
the Queensland University of Technology.
Clair Ledgerwood
Dispensing optician Clair Ledgerwood, who runs Black
& Lizars’ Kilgour practice in Ayr, has won the Practice
Manager of the Year award at the company’s annual
awards ceremony.
Clair, who has been with the practice for 13 years,
trained at ABDO College in Kent before embarking on her
professional career. As well as being a dispensing optician,
she recently qualified as a contact lens optician.
Claire was given her award at a ceremony at the
Crieff Hydro. She said: “I am delighted to have won the
recognition of my peers with this award, which belongs
as much to the terrific team in Dalblair Road who
continue to provide a first class service to both existing
and new customers.”
Specsavers will be the exclusive sponsor
of Vision Aid Overseas’ (VAO) 30th
Anniversary gala dinner taking place
on Saturday 10 October at the Holiday
Inn, Coventry.
As part of its commitment to VAO in
its 30th anniversary year, and to assist the
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
De Rigo launched a new Luxury Members
Club at a special event in Hertfordshire
De Rigo Luxury is a concept that focuses
on beautifully crafted, handmade eyewear
and an elite club, which offers its members
premium benefits and exclusive service.
Launched at Hanbury Manor, Ware,
guests were able to view collections from
Chopard, Lanvin and new tailor-made,
bespoke Lozza Sartoriale.
Guests also heard more about De
Rigo and its passion for high-quality,
fashion-focused frames. The Members Club
offers exclusive previews of its latest
collections, extended three-year product
guarantees, one-to-one exchange, priority
shipping, exclusive product SKUs and
visual merchandising workshops on a
quarterly basis.
charity’s aim to raise an additional
£150,000 of funds, the optical group has
also pledged to support 14 runners
who are fundraising for VAO by taking
part in this year’s Great Ethiopian Run
in November.
Tickets to the gala dinner cost £30 for
VAO members and £50 for non-members
City & Islington College, formerly City &
East London, is inviting alumni to
celebrate its 50th anniversary of training
and supporting the optics profession on
Thursday 9 July from 5-7.30pm.
The event takes place in the Centre for
Applied Sciences, with Professor Mo Jalie
providing a keynote address. Email Gloria
Sayers at [email protected] or
telephone 020 7520 0662 for more details
and to attend.
Marchon Eyewear has announced the
long-term extension of its licensing
agreement with Nike for the exclusive
design, production and worldwide
distribution of Nike optical and sunglass
Claudio Gottardi, president and CEO of
Marchon Eyewear, said: “We are confident
that with the renewal of our long-standing
partnership, which dates back to 1999, we
can achieve further success with the Nike
eyewear collections.”
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Bright new Progear Eyeguard
Norville’s Progear Eyeguard goggles are
now available in four eye-catching neon
colours and two transparent options.
Designed for active sports, with antiallergy soft nose pads and super tough
polycarbonate temples, the frame can
withstand high-impact knocks whilst
retaining a high level of comfort. For best
protection, Norville recommends glazing
with Polycarbonate or Trivex white or
photochromic lenses – +5.00 to -6.00DS
cyls to 4.00 SV or multifocal.
Progear are ASTM F803-03 and EN 166
certified for basketball, football, squash,
badminton and baseball (when supplied
with Polycarbonate or Trivex lenses).
Judges consider the winning project
A professional jury has chosen the three winning projects in the second International
Eyewear Design Contest, organised by OWP.
A total of 146 young designers from 26 countries submitted their creative ideas for
eyewear, with a focus on the current urban street style with a jury made up of designers,
an editor from the Süddeutsche Zeitung Magazin, product managers and the management
of OWP. Daniel Choi from Virginia, USA, was declared the winner for his project – ‘Accent:
for the urban street dancer’.
According to Choi, there are “hardly any glasses that are functional and at the same
time suit the sense of style of a hip hopper”. In his design, an elastic band – elegant with
golden decoration fixed to the temples – ensures that a hip hop dancer can keep his glasses
on his nose no matter what dance position he adopts.
The three top designs are awarded prizes totaling between 500 and 2,000 Euro. The
winner can also choose between the prize money and a four-week training course at OWP.
The best 20 designs are also showcased at the major eyewear trade shows in Paris, Munich
and Milan.
Re-brand for SiH lenses
‘Live vivid’ is the basis of a new campaign
from CooperVision to re-introduce clarity
1 day with a new look that is consistent
with other CooperVision lenses.
CooperVision added clariti 1 day
contact lenses to its portfolio through its
acquisition of Sauflon and has been
steadily expanding the availability of clariti
1 day lenses worldwide.
The ‘Live vivid’ advertising and digital
marketing campaign features bright,
colourful images and graphics appearing in
various markets around the world.
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Using high-precision genetic tests to
differentiate the thousands of bacteria
that make up the human microbiome,
researchers at NYU Langone Medical
Center suggest that they have found a
possible – and potentially surprising –
root cause of the increased frequency of
certain eye infections among contact
lens wearers.
In a study report on their work
presented at the annual meeting of the
American Society for Microbiology on 31
May in New Orleans, the researchers said
they had identified a diverse set of
microorganisms in the eyes of daily
contact lens wearers that more closely
resembles the group of microorganisms of
their eyelid skin than the bacterial
grouping typically found in the eyes of
Specifically, the team found that the
eye surface, or conjunctiva, has surprisingly
higher bacterial diversity than the skin
directly beneath the eye and three times
the usual proportion of Methylobacterium,
Lactobacillus, Acinetobacter, and
Pseudomonas bacteria in the eyes of the
study’s nine contact lens wearers than is
typically found on the surface of the
eyeballs of 11 other men and women in
the study who did not wear contact lenses.
When measured and plotted on a graph,
statistical germ diversity scores showed
that the eye microbiome of contact lens
wearers had a composition more similar to
that of the wearer’s skin than the eye
microbiome of non-lens wearers.
“Our research clearly shows that
putting a foreign object, such as a contact
lens, on the eye is not a neutral act,” said
senior study investigator and NYU Langone
microbiologist, Dr Maria Gloria
“What we hope our future experiments
will show is whether these changes in the
eye microbiome of lens wearers are due to
fingers touching the eye, or from the lens’s
direct pressure affecting and altering the
immune system in the eye and what
bacteria are suppressed or are allowed to
thrive,” she added.
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Barry Covill with Sheila Hope
The Worshipful Company of Spectacle
Makers’ Society ‘Event of the Year’ was
held on 23 May at the headquarters of
the Magic Circle to mark the handover of
chairmanship of the society from Barry
Covill to Sheila Hope – former Dispensing
Optics production editor.
After a wine and canapé reception
Freemen, Liverymen and their guests were
entertained in the Magic Circle Theatre
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
by illusionist Graham Jolley. During a black
tie dinner, Barry presented Sheila with
the society’s chain of office for the next
three years.
Sheila, together with a committee,
organise events throughout the year to
promote the fellowship of Freemen and
Liverymen of the company.
A raffle made £625 for the company’s
charity, which was established to fund the
fight against visual impairment in the UK
and abroad, improvements to the quality of
life of those who have already lost that fight,
and research projects within vision science.
On the Sunday morning, the society
visited Spencer House at St James’s, built
by the ancestors of the late Princess Diana.
The General Optical Council (GOC) has
thanked stakeholders for responding in
such large numbers to its consultation on
new standards of practice designed to raise
standards across the optical professions.
Alistair Bridge, GOC director of strategy,
said: “We are really pleased to have received
so many responses to the consultation and
from such a wide range of stakeholders,
including many registrants. The feedback will
really help us to ensure that the final version
of the new standards enables us to better
protect the public while minimising the
burden on registrants and providing room for
them to use their judgement as
“It will be really important for the
standards to make our expectations clearer
and treat registrants as healthcare
professionals who provide invaluable services
to the public with the potential to do more
in the future,” added Alistair.
The GOC received around 2,000 responses
to the written consultation and an online
registrants’ survey. The regulator also held a
series of focus groups with patients, the public,
registrants, students, insurers, educators and
fitness to practise decision-makers.
If you know of a dispensing optician,
or a dependant of a dispensing
optician, who might benefit from the
ABDO Benevolent Fund, please get in
touch with Jane Burnand on 020 7298
5102 or write to her at ABDO, 199
Gloucester Terrace, London W2 6LD
ColorMatic IQ offer
Until the end of July, Rodenstock is
offering independent practices special
net prices on all ColorMatic IQ lenses
and polarised lenses, including free
glazing or remote edging.
Debbie Bathgate, Rodenstock’s lens
product manager, said: “We want to give
independent opticians everything they could
possibly need to offer the best sun protection
for their customers. The Sunny Days with
Rodenstock promotion provides them with an
ideal tool to promote their practice using
attractive, professional marketing material
while offering their clients exceptional value
on ColorMatic and polarised products.”
Posters, showcards, patient mailers and
demonstration lenses are available.
An international research team, including
Moorfields consultants Professors Michel
Michaelides and Andrew Webster, have
discovered a new gene that underlies
According to the study, published in
Nature Genetics, there is a fault in the ATF6
gene, which plays a major role in this
disorder. Five other genes had previously
been identified as causing achromatopsia,
but the fact that families remain for whom
these genes do not account for their
condition led researchers to believe there
must be other genes yet to be identified.
People with achromatopsia see the world
only in black and white and their extreme
sensitivity to light makes them nearly blind
in bright sunlight. It affects an estimated one
in 30,000 people worldwide. There is
currently no effective treatment for the
disease, which appears in infancy, although a
gene therapy trial at Moorfields and the UCL
Institute of Ophthalmology is planned for
one genetic form of achromatopsia.
Ophthalmologists prescribe specially-filtered
dark glasses or red-tinted contact lenses to
reduce light sensitivity with the intention
of improving comfort and visual acuity.
A still from the commercial
Sir Trevor McDonald OBE has made his TV
commercial debut in an eye health
campaign for Vision Express.
The broadcasting veteran is backing a
call to take eye health more seriously in an
‘Eyewitness’ advert, incorporating footage
of Sir Trevor during significant moments in
history spanning his 40-year-plus career.
Concluding with the message, ‘Look
after your eyes and they could last a
lifetime’, the advert is the latest release
from Vision Express as part of its ‘Vision
taken seriously’ campaign.
ABDO Area representatives provided an update of their recent
activities at the Consultation Day with the Areas in May
Area 2: Sixty delegates had attended an evening meeting in March. An FQE revision
day had been held for third-year students, with 28 attending and 28 on a reserve list.
Two additional evening meetings had already attracted bookings of 40 and 100
delegates respectively.
Area 3: A half-day event had been held in March with some 100 delegates. Ten sponsors
had supported the event but there had been difficulty in finding space for them due to the
large size of their stands.
Area 4: A meeting had been held in January, with 80 delegates, and another in May, when
60 delegates had booked but 22 had either cancelled at the last minute or not turned up
on the day. This had resulted in a waste of money on catering. The majority of the Area
committee members were engaged with their relevant LOCs.
Area 5: A CET day had been held in March; unfortunately the date had clashed with a
major multiple’s conference and a Sight Care Day, however 67 delegates had attended.
There was a 10 per cent dropout rate, which had meant a waste of food and money.
Area 6: A meeting had been held in March, with some 30 attendees. A day event had been
held in May, when a “disappointingly” low number of 42 delegates had booked; 36 had
attended, two had cancelled in advance and four had not turned up on the day. Thirteen
sponsors had supported the event. Unfortunately a larger hotel space had been booked
than turned out to be necessary, which had been a waste of money.
Area 7: A fully booked student supervisor day had been held in March covering the PQE and
FQE syllabi; 90 per cent of delegates were students, many of whom asked for the event to
be held on a regular basis. There had been 15 ‘no shows’ on the day, which had been
“frustrating” as there had been a waiting list for places. A CET day was held n May, and an
evening event took place in June..
Area 9: A meeting had been held in March, when 63 members had booked and 52 had
attended. An event would take place in May, with 50 bookings.
Area 10: An event had been held in March, with 80 bookings but only 57 delegates attending.
Fortunately the committee had under-catered.
Area 11: Two CET evenings had been held in February with a further meeting in May, when
130 members had booked and there had been a waiting list. There had subsequently been
cancellations, the reserve list had been added and 105 members attended. The waiting list
was automatically transferred to subsequent bookings.
Area 12: A CET day had been held in March, funded by NHS Scotland. Half the booked
members did not turn up on the day, whilst there were many more on the waiting list who
would have welcomed the places. This had been “hugely embarrassing” for the Area and the
chairman had sent emails to all the ‘no shows’. Another NHS-funded event would take
place shortly and contact details had been circulated to all delegates so that they could
contact someone if they could not attend. Two Area-only events would be held towards the
end of the year to avoid any clash with the ABDO conference.
Areas 1 and 8 were not represented at the meeting. Read our report from the Consultation
Day with the Areas on page 34-35.
FOR DETAILS OF FURTHER EVENTS, visit the events section of the ABDO website
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
For more information contact Rodenstock on 01474 325 555
of youth
Children are in the driving seat when it comes
to choosing their frames – and what choice
there is nowadays...
Model Squaw from the WhizKids range
One of the new models in the Blitz Kids collection
hildren today want access to the same modern, fashionable
eyewear as their parents, according to Federation of
Manufacturing Opticians chairman, Barry Dibble. “Sports
eyewear is another growth area as eye safety, good vision
and protection from harmful UV radiation are increasingly
recognised by parents as being important for their children,” says Barry.
“A child’s frame, however, is not simply an adult frame in a smaller size
because their facial cranial measurements are still developing. Frame
designers have responded to this and have produced eyewear suitable
for this developing market from three months to young adult.”
James Dawson, an award-winning dispensing optician, MD and lead
consultant at Serendipity Optical Consultants and 7Shades frame agency,
believes more and more kids and parents are seeing glasses as a fashion
accessory. He says: “A lot of children who don’t need glasses want them – they
see their friends in them and want the same. In practice, it is often the ones
who don’t need them that get upset rather than the ones who do need them.”
James believes that one of the biggest influences on the trend has been
the advent of the 3D cinema experience. “Kids are less self-conscious and
definitely more style conscious. When cinema glasses appeared a few years
ago, teens were taking the lenses out and wearing them after they had left
the cinema. Fashion stores began selling them with non-prescription lenses,
even celebs are happy to be seen in their glasses, which in turn makes it
popular to the celeb obsessed younger generation. They have become a
fashion statement and a way for today’s youth to express themselves.”
Here’s a snapshot of just some of the latest eyewear collections for
Dunelm Optical has introduced seven new optical frames into its popular
WhizKids collection, helping children create a stylish identity through eyewear. A
range of lightweight frames in durable acetate and metal have been launched
for the summer season for toddlers through to pre-teens, specially designed to
suit small features and fit with young lifestyles. Curly sides have been designed
to fit snug round small ears and remain firmly in place on active toddlers, while
extra padding on bridges protects delicate noses. The ‘stylish seven’ include
metal plastic hybrids, bright two-way colourations, upswept wayfarer
shapes to echo adult styles and playful prints etched on sides.
The latest Blitz Kidz catalogue from Norville features the full collection of
26 frames including nine trendy new models such as BK026, a silver pin
detail Wayfarer and BK031, an oval-shaped metal frame available in pink
and green (pictured). The fun and fresh collection for children aged six
months to 12 years features different eye shapes in exciting bright colours
perfect for today’s younger patients. Every frame is supplied with a novelty
shoe-shaped case plus Norville offers a two-year ‘no quibble’ guarantee
against lens breakage when supplied glazed with Trivex Trilogy lenses.
Rock Star model Calvin and the promotional banner
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
In time for the summer holiday rush on eye examinations, Eyespace’s
street-cool ‘Americana’ brand, Rock Star, is offering customers – and nine of
their friends – to become a real-life rock star for the day, recording their
own music video. The competition will also see the winner’s optician
receive a rock star experience. Participating practices will receive a pack
containing a double-sided concertina window banner, featuring new Rock
Star imagery, plus an A2 poster and entry cards to help promote the
competition in-practice. Popular recent releases to the Rock Star range
include super-bright complementary frames Calvin and Ariana, which
feature on the new banner.
International Eyewear has released brand new Star Wars Rebel and Frozen
eyewear collections for young patients everywhere. Targeting boys aged
between four and 10, the Star Wars Rebels eyewear collection features
galactic colour combinations and memorable characters emblazoned on the
temples. Modern eye shapes have been designed with children in mind
ensuring most prescriptions can be accommodated.
Aimed at girls in the same age group, the Frozen eyewear collection
provides a flurry of frames featuring enchanting colour combinations and
characters from the Disney film and patterns on the temples. Modern eye
shapes have been designed with children in mind ensuring most
prescriptions can be accommodated. A branded case accompanies every
frame in both collections with point-of-sale package featuring some of the
most iconic characters also available.
Ogi Eyewear has expanded its Ogi Kids line with two new styles in the
‘Mommy & Me, Daddy & I’ collection, a series of coordinating adult and
child-sized frames. New OK316 embraces its parent model, the Ogi
Eyewear 9206, in a flattering cat eye shape mixed with bold neon colouring
to create a fun and playful look for any stylish trendsetter. The OK317
(pictured) is modelled after the Ogi Eyewear 3126, combining fun colour
combinations with a flattering fit. The double laminated acetate features
woven strands of glimmer with feather-like iridescence in pink, purple, blue
and aqua. Backed in coordinating solid hues for a pop of colour, the OK317
is the perfect accessory to any girl’s wardrobe. Ogi Kids counter cards are
available upon request.
Protective eyewear specialist Wiley X has unveiled its new WX Flash, part
of the company’s all-new Young Force line of prescription-ready sports
protective eyewear for children. There are four colours for the new Flash
frame, all with an eye size of 48 to suit younger boys and girls with smaller
face sizes. A unique feature of all Young Force frames is the ability to
quickly change from spectacles to goggles, and then back again. With the
simple push of a button, wearers can remove the temples and replace them
with an included adjustable elastic strap. All frames also come equipped
with a removable elastic button strap that plugs into the temple tips for a
snug fit.
A whole host of children’s new models are available from French company
Opal – from the Cars collection based on the Disney movie of the same
name, to Spider-Man to Hello Kitty for girls. With this new design and its
original temples, budding racing drivers will be raring to go with the latest
model in the Cars collection (pictured). A frame built for comfort as well as
speed, the Cars frame for boys aged from three to six years features a slim
front, open end-pieces for lightness, rubber temples with 3D car motif and
integral hinge, and temple tips with tyre-track effect. It comes in dark grey,
navy blue and claret.
Capture their imagination with
Frozen frames
The OK317 features fun
colour combinations
Flash Model YFFLA02 in Royal
Blue and Lime Green
A new Cars frame built for speed and comfort
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Florals and bright colours
epitomise the latest Joules styles
Fusing fashion and function with Colorado Kids
Original prints and a colourful approach are the main ingredients in the
new Joules eyewear collection from Mondottica.
Featuring combinations of bright, vibrant colours and traditional shades,
the Joules signature hare can be found hopping around on tips and inside
nose pads and prints run through onto lens cloths. Shapes for girls are
taken directly from the adult collection and miniaturised for the smaller
face while the signature hare logo gets a colourful makeover as do logo
trims and materials. The Joules kids optical frames are vibrant in colour and
finish and feature soft touch rubber branding. Prints take on a more playful
theme where multicoloured spots meet hand drawn countryside animals.
Colorado Kids is a new concept from Rodenstock, offering not only unisex
shapes with subtle colour schemes, but also slim and sleek temple designs
for the ultimate wearing comfort.
The collection features premium acetate frames, which have been fitted
with adjustable pad arms with silicone nose pads, which is a must have for
a perfect fit says the company. “These models are ideal for children leading
up to their teen years where fashion and function slowly fuse together,”
said Damien Klevge, Rodenstock business manager eyewear. Models R5288,
R5289 and R5290 (pictured) are each available in four colours and two sizes.
The spring/summer 2015 sunglasses line from Zoobug features a variety of
highly colourful, fashion-led shapes in creative colour combinations.
New touches for trendsetting youngsters include flash mirror lenses,
Italian striped acetates, classical tortoise, wood grain effects, and neon
brights. Iconic Zoobug shapes such as the Daisy and circular Sunny have
had a plush makeover and the Aviator has returned in fresh Mediterranean
inspired tones or trendy patterns. New shapes include a traditional square
(pictured), a sleek cat eye and an elegant super narrow minimal modified
All Zoobug lenses are polarised or UV400 and selected especially for
children’s eyes. The latest styles come with a new foldable orange canvas
case with sandy inner flock lining and Zoobug glasses print cloth.
A new Zoobug shape for
spring/summer 2015
The award-winning Bollé Sport Protective programme brings together all
the know-how and expertise of the brand in a range of glasses especially
designed for young people playing sport.
The glasses conform to the European and American standards of
reference for eye protection in the area of sport – EN 166 and ASTMF 803 –
with or without prescription correction. Sponsored by the international
basketball superstar, Tony Parker, the programme provides children with
glasses offering superior optical quality lenses, Bollé’s Platinum anti-scratch
and anti-fog coating, high frontal impact resistance, protection against side
impacts, and 100 per cent UVA and UVB filtration.
Next month’s product spotlight is on fashion frames.
Bollé model Crunch in pink
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
It’s a feeling
Stepper UK Limited
11 Tannery Road
01732 375975
Frame style shown: Si 30059
Dispensing opticians: Professional Conduct, Optical Appliances, Paediatric Dispensing
Optometrists: Professional Conduct, Optical Appliances
An overview of
paediatric dispensing
Part 1: Frames and faces
he Opticians Act (1989)
dictates that spectacles can
only be dispensed to patients
below the age of 16 by (or
under the supervision of) fullyqualified and registered dispensing
opticians and optometrists.The reasons
for this restricted supply are that children
present a special case that requires a
different approach to dealing directly
with adults, and more specialist knowledge.
Appropriate visual experience is
essential for the development of most
visual functions and it is critical that this
experience occurs during a particular stage
of a child’s development. This stage of
development is often called the ‘critical
period’ because if appropriate stimulation
fails to occur, it may be difficult, even
impossible, to develop that function later.
Due to ongoing development of the retina
and visual brain, this period extends until
about eight years of age, with different
processes having different critical periods
within that time.
Unequal visual inputs in childhood
caused by conditions such as strabismus or
congenital cataracts can cause amblyopia, a
condition affecting around four per cent of
the population, in which vision through one
eye, the so-called ‘lazy eye’, is poor despite
the eye itself being healthy. Patching the
better eye can restore the quality of vision
through the lazy eye, but only if it is done
during the critical period. The accuracy of
the visual assessment and any consequent
dispensing will, therefore, have a lasting
impact on the child’s development.
It is often argued that every dispensing,
no matter how straightforward or complex
it appears, deserves the same degree of
attention and expertise, but doing he best
that can be done for children requires extra
skills and inevitably, a great deal of
patience. It should be remembered that a
poorly fitting frame could result in lasting
disfigurement and it is unlikely that a child
will draw attention to any problems unless
the frame becomes painful to wear.
The General Optical Council (GOC) has
produced a series of competency criteria for
dispensing opticians, and one specifically for
the restricted supply to children. The Elements
of Competence and Performance Criteria
for paediatric dispensing reads as follows:
9.1 The ability to communicate effectively
with the child and their carer
9.1.1 Directs communication to the child in
appropriate language and manner
9.1.2 Discusses with the carer as appropriate
the factors influencing dispensing
9.2 An understanding of paediatric refractive
prescribing and management decisions
9.2.1 Understands the methods of refracting
children and prescribing decisions
9.2.2 Understands the investigation and
management of children presenting with
anomalies of binocular vision
9.3 The ability to advise on and measure for
the most appropriate paediatric frames
9.3.1 Takes accurate facial measurements
9.3.2 Understands changes in measurements
as the facial features develop
9.3.3 Advises on appropriate frames and
availability of special features
9.4 The ability to advise and measure for
the most appropriate lens choice
9.4.1 Advises on lens choice with emphasis
on safety, comfort and cosmesis
9.4.2 Measures for lens positioning
9.5 The ability to fit, adjust and repair
paediatric optical appliances
9.5.1 Fits the appliance effectively and has
the ability to adjust and repair the appliance
It is worth a reminder of the factors that
contribute towards the successful fitting of
a child’s spectacles. Frames should:
• be cosmetically acceptable
• hold and maintain lenses in the
correct position
• be safe and hard wearing
• fit properly in all respects
• be comfortable
• be light in weight
This article has been approved for 1 CET point by the GOC. It is open to all FBDO members, including associate
member optometrists. The multiple-choice questions (MCQs) for this month’s CET are available on page 26
and online. An answer sheet for posted or faxed entries is available for download on ABDO’s Dispensing Optics
log-in page. Online entry: log in to, and follow the centre section link to ‘CET Online’.Please
ensure that your email address and GOC number are up-to-date. The pass mark is 60 per cent. The answers
will appear in the November 2015 issue of Dispensing Optics. The closing date is 9 October 2015.
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
by Andrew Cripps FBDO (Hons)
The distance measured in the assumed
spectacle plane between the lower limbus and
nasal crest (measured for right and left eyes)
The vertical distance from the horizontal
centre line of the front to the mid-point
of the lower edge of the bridge
The horizontal distance between the assumed
spectacle plane and the extremities of the
lashes in their most protruding position
The minimum horizontal distance between
the back plane of the front and the centre
of the back of the bridge
The angle between the median line and
the and a line representing the average
bearing surface
The angle between the vertical and the
line of intersection of the pad plane with
the back plane of the front
The angle between the assumed pad bearing
surface of the nose and a normal to the
spectacle plane
The angle between the pad plane and a
normal to the back plane of the front
Table 1. Comparison of frame and facial measurements
Figure 1.1. Splay angle is the angle between the assumed pad bearing
surface of the nose and a normal to the spectacle plane
If the child has a favourite colour it
would be helpful to steer them (and of
course their parents) towards frames that
attract them. Some frames are manufactured
from nylon-based materials which, although
safe, are prone to warp and lose their
adjustment easily. It is the fitting and comfort
aspects that are most important and frames
should be made to measurements that
conform to small faces.
The most important facial and frame
measurements in paediatric dispensing are
bridge measurements, specifically the crest
height, bridge projection, frontal angle and
splay angle. The definitions of these
measurements are in Table 1.
As a child of about four years of age
develops into mid-teens it is likely that the
four main bridge measurements will change
substantially. The crest height is likely to
change from being slightly negative to
around +5mm and the projection from zero
to about +4mm. Similarly, the frontal angle
and splay angle will decrease by about 6º
and continue to change until growth ceases.
Other measurements such as head width,
length to bend, vertex distance and angle of
side will increase in proportion as the nose
structure develops.
Although it is possible to tabulate
average measurements for given age groups,
other factors such as ethnic background will
complicate the picture. For example, AfroCaribbean children tend to show a wider
frontal angle and splay angle and the facial
characteristics in children with Down’s
syndrome between about seven and 14
years of age, do not change with age and
rarely coincide with those of other children,
either of a similar age or younger.
If a spectacle frame designed for an
adult is simply ‘scaled down’ for a child
then the length to bend, box centre
distance and eye size can be reduced but
it is likely that the projection and crest
height will remain the same, so these
values will not correspond with the
child’s features.
Figures 1.2 to 1.4 illustrate how these
facial measurements can be taken. The choice
of frame can then be aligned with these
values so that inappropriate styles are avoided.
Even if the child is uncooperative, some
idea of the measurements can be assessed.
The pantoscopic angle and angle of side
are likely to be less than that for an adult.
Also, with the sides located more centrally
the child will be less likely to look over the
top of the lenses. The two comfort areas,
the bridge and the ear points, should
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Continuing Education and Training
Figure 1.2. Frontal angle is the angle between the median line and a line
representing the average bearing surface
Figure 1.3. Bridge projection is the horizontal distance between the assumed
spectacle plane and the extremities of the lashes in their most protruding position
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
received special attention when fitting the
frame as they have soft, easily damaged
tissue. Silicone material is ideal for forming
bridge contours and covering metal and curl
sides. For the very young a single bridge
component, or insert bridge, is often
preferable to separate pads-on-arms so that
weight is distributed evenly over the crest
and not just on each side of the nose. An
example of this is shown in Figure 2.
For drop end sides the length to bend
and the length of drop will be significantly
short, the latter at about 25mm compared
with 35mm or more for an adult. It is not
acceptable to simply reposition the bend to
create the required length to bend and be
left with a very long drop, which can
disappear below the collar. Similarly, the
total length of a curl side is critical as the
extreme end should tuck snugly into the
gap behind the lobe and the curl should
follow the contour of the ear and rest
against the head. Pressure at the ear points
and the temple must be avoided otherwise
marks will be left in the soft, developing
skin. Attention to the angles of let-back and
any subsequent bowing of the sides will
rectify this.
Unfortunately, the well set-up frame is
not likely to stay that way for long and
regular assessments of the fit are essential
to check if adjustments are needed or
perhaps measurements changed.
Figure 2. Children’s frame with
a single bridge component
(courtesy of Orange Eyewear)
Figure 4. Fitting very young children
and the frontal angle wide enough to
prevent pinching on either side of the nose.
Figure 1.4. Crest height is the distance measured in the assumed
spectacle plane between the lower limbus and nasal crest
Figure 3 is an example of a frame with
sprung sides, silicone pads on arms and
short drop end sides. The position of the
pads will determine the height of the frame
relative to the pupil and must be adjusted
so that the splay angle accurately follows
the facial measurement, avoiding red marks
and undue pressure. Pads should be
adjustable for height as well as splay angle
and frontal angle.
Most measurements are easily adjusted
on these styles if the correct tools are used.
For metal frames it is best to avoid nickel,
or to cover the sides where they touch
the temple with silicone tubing, just in
case the child should be allergic to the
material. Some frames have sides fixed
open so there is no likelihood of trapping
little fingers.
It can be seen in Figure 4 that
considerable thought has gone into
providing a frame for this age group that
will actually fit snugly around the contours
of the nose, even though there is yet to be
any significant development in the bone
structure. The crest height is relatively low
Figure 3. A typical frame designed for children
The need for regular assessment of the fit
of children’s spectacles has already been
mentioned. In order to carry out this task
and to repair frames, where possible, every
practice must have a variety of tools. The
following list is not exhaustive and represents
the minimum requirements:
• Vice and/or suitable holding equipment
• Heater
• Ruler
• Files with a safety edge
• Reamers
• Screwdrivers and wrenches
• Pliers: rim forming, round nose, flat jaw,
parallel jaw nylon covered, half round nose
• Side cutters
• A selection of drill bits and chuck
As with any environment where tools
are used, every effort must be made to
ensure that they are used safely. A supply of
consumables such as nose pads and side
tips in various materials and sizes is also
desirable. If substantial repairs are indicated
it may well be best to start again with new
measurements and order a replacement. It
may then be possible to renovate the existing
pair to act as spares in an emergency.
Part 2, published later in 2015, will
consider communication and lens dispensing.
ANDREW CRIPPS FBDO (Hons) is former
senior lecturer and pathway leader of
the Department of Hearing and Vision
Sciences, Anglia Ruskin University. He is
a regular CET contributor, an ABDO and
WCSM examiner and former member of
the GOC’s Fitness to Practise Panel.
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Multiple choice questions:
An overview of paediatric dispensing
Part 1: Frames and faces by Andrew Cripps FBDO
2. The facial measurement ‘Bridge Projection’ is defined as:
a. The minimum horizontal distance between the back plane
of the front and the centre of the back of the bridge
b. The horizontal distance between the assumed spectacle
plane and the extremities of the lashes in their most
protruding position
c. The maximum horizontal distance between the front of
the frame and the centre of the back of the bridge
d. The distance measured in the assumed spectacle plane
between the lower limbus and nasal crest
3. Complete the sentence correctly. A frame crest height
of +2mm indicates:
a. the bridge is inset
b. the optical centres should be lowered by 1mm
c. eye lashes will not touch the back of the spectacle lens
d. the mid-point of the lower edge of the bridge is above HCL
4. Complete the sentence correctly. The length of drop
on a child’s frame should be:
carefully adjusted to 35mm
the same length as the equivalent curl side
adapted to the individual
the same measurement for right and left
5. Complete the sentence correctly. Single component
bridges are sometimes preferred to pads on arms because:
a. they are made of a softer material
b. single components are less likely to break
c. they have a positive crest height
d. weight can be distributed more evenly
1. Which statement is FALSE regarding the development
of facial features?
a. Projection is likely to become more positive
b. Crest height will tend to become more positive
c. Frontal angle will decrease
d. Splay angle will increase
6. An ideal spectacle frame for children would be:
a. an adult’s style where the measurements have been
reduced accordingly
b. the child’s favourite frame style
c. one which is acceptable to the child, the parents and
the practitioner
d. the cheapest available as they are replaced frequently
Online completion - - after member log-in go to ‘CET online’
After the closing date, the answers can be viewed on the 'CET Online' page of To download, print or save your results letter, go to 'View your
CET record’ after the closing date. If you would prefer to receive a posted results letter, contact the CET Office 01206 734155 or email [email protected]
Occasionally, printing errors are spotted after the journal has gone to print. Notifications can be viewed at on the CET Online page
Leading eye health and sight loss organisations in
England have launched a new action plan called the
England Vision Strategy.
The action plan is based on six key priorities including:
improving eye health for all; improving treatments and
support for people losing their sight; and increasing
participation and inclusion for people with sight loss.
The England Vision Strategy is part of the UK Vision
Strategy, a cross-sector initiative, uniting all those who
want to take action on issues relating to eye health and
sight loss. The England Vision Strategy will be promoted
and driven forward by an executive group consisting of the
leading eye health and sight loss experts across England.
The action plan will aim to deliver the UK Vision Strategy
outcomes in England.
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Peter Corbett, England Vision Strategy co-chair and
chief executive of the Thomas Pocklington Trust, said: “I am
delighted that we have this opportunity to make a real
difference for people with sight loss. Far too often we hear
of people across England experiencing a postcode lottery
for services or falling through the gaps in current systems
resulting in social isolation, loss of independence and far
worse. The England Vision Strategy will work to combat
these failings, working in partnership with providers and the
public to achieve great things.”
John Thompson, England Vision Strategy co-chair,
added: “Across the sector we have a wealth of knowledge
and experience to draw upon. The England Vision Strategy
provides us with a solid framework on which to build, using
the strengths of our colleagues to prevent people losing
their sight unnecessarily, to provide support to those who
need it and to effect lasting change for the better.”
For more information visit
Multiple choice answers:
Six of the following questions were presented online to entrants to comply with the GOC’s
best practice specifications for this type of CET
If the line of sight and the optical axis of a spectacle lens
do not coincide, the likely result will be:
a. an increase in spherical power and decrease in
cylindrical power
b. a stronger cylinder with its axis perpendicular to the axis
of rotation
c. a decrease in spherical power and increase in cylinder power
d. an increase in both principal powers
d is the correct answer. The spherical element will
become stronger and a cylindrical element with its axis
parallel to the axis of rotation will be introduced, in addition
to any original cylinder.
Which statement is true?
a. 1.74 lens material provides the thinnest and safest option
for sport
b. Low Abbe numbers result in better optical quality
c. Only CR39 lenses need to have a UV absorber for
outdoor sports
d. A vertex distance is not required if the prescription is
under +/-5.00D
c is the correct answer. Other materials absorb all
incident UVA and UVB wavelengths.
Which statement best relates to digital surfacing as a
form of lens production?
a. It is the utilisation of logarithmic software programmes to
enable complex curvatures to be generated
b. It allows production of prism compensation for face form
angle for the first time
c. Surface aberrations are largely confined to the periphery
of the lens
d. Lenses can now be fully optimised as part of the design
process, and individualised during the surfacing process
d is the correct answer. Much more complex surfaces
can now be generated and the wearer’s specific requirements
included in the individualisation process.
Complete the sentence correctly. When designing
progressive power lenses to be worn playing golf…
a. Aberrational astigmatism should be confined to the upper
temporal side
b. The intermediate corridor should extend below that of a
general purpose design
c. The minimum fitting height should be as low as possible
d. The progression should always be worked on the
front surface
b is the correct answer. Addressing the ball requires
clear intermediate vision at ground level and fairly close to
the player. A general purpose progressive lens would have the
near portion in this position so the ball would be blurred.
A spectacle lens designed specifically for use by a
presbyope whilst running should have:
a. reduced aberrations in the vertical meridian
b. a narrower intermediate corridor
c. the addition reduced by 0.50D
d. a pantoscopic angle of zero
a is the correct answer. The main line of vision will be
straight ahead so clear vision is desirable along the vertical
meridian from distance up to 1-2m for safety.
Which statement is false?
a. A lens designed for skiing concentrates on minimising
surface astigmatism
b. The ‘as worn position’ of a spectacle frame includes
information on pantoscopic angle, vertex distance and
face form angle
c. Choosing a large uncut with a relatively flat base curve
will help to reduce aberrations in a wrap frame
d. Rodenstock produces fully optimised and individualised
sports single vision and progressive power lenses to the
same prescription range.
c is the correct answer. The increased edge or centre
thickness will exacerbate the situation.
The estimated number of UK residence who are
ametropic and regularly take part in sport is:
a. Almost seven million
b. 14.759 million
c. Nearly five million
d. Over nine million
c is the correct answer.
A progressive power lens design that has not been fully
optimised for use in a wrap frame will exhibit the
maximum aberrations relative to the uncut’s centre:
a. 250 above and 100 to the nasal side
b. 200 below and 200 to the temporal side
c. 150 below and 200 to the nasal side
d. 300 below and 100 to the temporal side
b is the correct answer. Optimisation significantly
reduces the aberrations and their asymmetrical nature.
To download, print or save your CET result letter, go to Log-in and go to 'View your CET record'.
Prescription lenses for sport by Tanya Storey FBDO
FOR THE MOST UP-TO-DATE ABDO EVENT DETAILS keep an eye out for the eNews landing in your in-box, and the
events section of the website, visit
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Hannah Price describes one of the more
unusual paeditaric dispenses she’s had since
working in independent practice
going the extra mile
can remember sitting in one of Sally
Bates’ lectures at ABDO College, on
paediatric dispensing if I recall
correctly. She was discussing
therapeutic dispensing – particularly
the benefits of yoked prisms.
Some people believe that yoked prism
lenses can be used to improve posture and
co-ordination for children with autism, as
they can have problems with ambient
vision. For children with Down’s syndrome,
it is possible that base down yoked prisms
will have the effect of the child lifting their
head and reduce the problems that slack
jaw can cause.
I found the subject fascinating, even
though we only touched on the benefits. At
the time, I was working for a large multiple
and most of my dispensing was run-of-themill. But for the last two-and-a-half years
I’ve been working for an independent
practice – and in that time I’ve done more
interesting and unusual dispenses than in
my previous eight years spent in optics.
Just over a year ago I started one of my
more interesting dispenses. A young lad
(11 years old at the time) had been in for
his routine eye exam. The optometrist he
saw, Adrian Buizer, had come through for
the handover and to discuss an idea he had
regarding a problem the patient was having
with his neck, caused by his eye condition.
The patient suffers from nystagmus (an
eye condition involving involuntary rapid
eye movements). He subconsciously
compensates for this by using his null point,
which is a certain gaze position that
reduces the magnitude of the eye
movements and so stabilises the vision.
The problem was that his null point was
an upward gaze. To look straight ahead at
the board at school, he had to dip his chin
quite significantly. This was leading to him
developing ocular torticollis, which is an
abnormal head position that maximises
visual acuity (torticollis literally means
‘twisted neck’). He was (and still is) under
the local hospital eye service for his
nystagmus, but they couldn’t offer any
suggestions to help.
Adrian believed that we could try using
yoked prisms, which is where prism of equal
deviation and direction is placed in front of
each eye. This would, in theory, allow us to
Figure 1. Light is deviated by the prism toward its base. The observer views an
object through the prism and the object appears displaced toward its apex
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
‘lift’ the image up. By using this technique,
our patient would be able to hold his head
in a more comfortable position, but keeping
the upward gaze to diminish the effects of
his nystagmus.
Neither of us had either prescribed or
dispensed yoked prisms before. After a quick
chat to make sure we were getting the right
direction for the prism, we decided that as
we wanted to ‘lift’ the image we would
need a base down prism. Our thought
process was that as a prism deviates light
towards the base, the image is displaced
towards the apex. As we wanted the image
up, the apex needed to be up, so the base
needed to be down (Figures 1 and 2).
Once we had figured out the direction
of the prism, we needed to work out how
much. We decided to start with 5Δ down in
each eye to begin with. We didn’t want to
go too strong all at once, or have lenses
that were cosmetically unacceptable. The
patient has a slight myopic prescription of
-0.75/-0.25x180 in both eyes, so luckily
there wasn’t too much lens substance to
begin with.
I called the patient and his parents
through to the dispensing room, and
Figure 2. A line of stars seen
through a prism base down
Figure 3. Patient’s spectacles with the prescription of: Right: -3.00/-1.50x90 6Δ Base Out. Left: -0.75DS 6Δ Base In
explained to them what we were planning
to do. I made it clear that it was an
experiment, how the theory worked, and
how we hoped it would help their son. I
informed them that if it helped, we might
modify the amount of prism to determine
the best visual and physical comfort for him.
We asked them to advise his teacher about
what we were doing, and requested feedback
on the impact, if any, on his work at school.
On collection the patient, and his
parents, were pleased with the results. They
were a little worried that he would end up
with ‘bottle-bottom’ lenses. I advised that if
there were any problems or difficulties to
come straight in to see us. Adrian was going
to see him again in six weeks to check how
he was getting on with the lenses. I followed
up with a courtesy phone call a month
later; both parents and school were pleased
with how his new spectacles were working.
At his next vision check, we decided to
increase his prism to 8Δ down in each eye,
to see if we could elevate his chin a fraction
more. We advised his parents to try both
and see which one felt more comfortable to
use, and that we would have him back in
three months to see how it was going.
When he returned for the next
appointment, the patient felt much happier
wearing the 5Δ down rather than the 8Δ
down. He felt the stronger prism made him
feel ill. Inspecting his frames, they were
rather bent out of shape (not unusual for a
12-year-old). I explained that the woozy
feeling was probably caused by the crooked
frames throwing the prism out of alignment
and that in future to come in for an
adjustment if the frames didn’t look
straight when worn. We reduced the prism
to 6Δ down in each eye, and arranged for a
review in three months.
The patient has since been back twice
for further follow-up exams, and finds the
6Δ is working the best for him. The
hospital, school and parents are all pleased
with his progress.
In an article published last month in the
College’s peer-reviewed journal, Optometry
in Practice, the team behind the study
recommended that a dementia diagnosis
should automatically trigger a range of
measures, as laid out in a Dementia Eye Care
Pathway, that would provide a route through
the care system that ensures people are
guided to the appropriate treatment at the
appropriate time.
Mike Bowen, the College’s director of
research and lead investigator on the project,
said: “Dementia should never be a barrier to a
sight test. Through this study, we know there
are a range of strategies that optometrists can
use to improve the eye examination for people
Emerging findings from the PrOVIDE
(Prevalence of Visual Impairment in
Dementia) project has led to calls for a
dedicated Dementia Eye Care Pathway.
The two-year project was funded by the
National Institute for Health Research (NIHR)
and was led by the College of Optometrists with
nationwide support from the Alzheimer’s Society,
Thomas Pocklington Trust, University College
London, Newcastle University, City University
London and the University of Birmingham.
The yoked prism has been so successful that
we have recently tried it with another older
patient with nystagmus. He has to look
towards the left (levoversion) to dampen
the eye movement. This means that he
turns his head to the right to compensate.
As he also suffers from spina bifida and
walks with the aid of crutches, it would
make life a little easier not having to hold
his head at that angle.
He saw practice optometrist Chris
Rushen and he felt that as the 6Δ worked
so well for the other patient, we should
start him with 6Δ base out in the right lens
and 6Δ base in for the left lens. This was
worked into his distance prescription of R:
-3.00/-1.50x90 L: -0.75DS (Figure 3). He
has only had the spectacles for a month so
far, and we have arranged for him to come
in after three months to see how it is
working, again advising him to come in
sooner if needed.
On a personal note, I do feel very lucky
to work with a team of optometrists who
are open minded to trying new ideas, and
to go that extra mile to help our patients.
As a dispensing optician, I think we’re in a
position to suggest and discuss these ideas
with the optometrists we work with, to not
only give our patients the best vision, but
also if possible to improve their quality of life.
HANNAH PRICE FBDO is a dispensing
optician at Buizer & Cole, Clacton on
Sea, Essex.
with dementia, such as scheduling longer than
usual appointments or spreading the exam
across two appointments to reduce stress on
the individual. A more flexible approach to the
GOS contract arrangements would help
with this.
“As more findings emerge from this
study, we look forward to sharing them with
the profession to ensure the best possible eye
and vision care for people with dementia,”
added Mike.
Emerging findings are continuing to be
reported at various conferences while the
project’s final report is currently under review
by the funders. Read Optometry in Practice
online at
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
This month, Antonia Chitty advises on how
to ensure mums think of your practice as the
number one in the area for family eyecare
Marketing to mums
f you plan marketing for your
practice it is important to consider
who you are targeting. Untargeted
marketing is a waste of resources. In
this article we consider marketing to
one specific group, but the ideas can be
applied to any group. Read on to find out
more about reaching out to mothers and
marketing your practice to families, as well
as to discover how one practice engages
with children from birth to teenagers.
If a parent makes an appointment for
one child in the family to have an eye
examination he or she is likely to bring their
siblings along for one too. If during that
appointment you find out more about the
family, you may discover that the parents
haven’t had an eye exam for some time, or
they are worried about their elderly parents
and whether they should be living
At this point, you can mention how an
eye exam can detect eye problems before
they cause symptoms, which might prompt
a parent to book for herself or her partner.
Alternatively, you could talk about the eye
exam as a way of helping to keep older
people safe and cutting the risk of slips and
falls. However the conversation goes, once
one member of the family is a patient, soon
the rest of the family can follow.
Mothers are often seen as the
gatekeeper to the health of the family.
Whether they work or not, women are more
likely to make health appointments for
parents, children and their partners, so if
you want to attract more families to your
practice you need to consider how to
market your services to mums.
Part of targeting a specific audience for
marketing can involve understanding more
about them. Look at the records of women
with children who attend your practice.
Which parts of town do they live in? What
age range do they fall within? What times
of day and days of the week do they
attend? There may be different sub-groups
of mothers: those who work and those who
don’t; those with babies and pre-schoolers
and those who rush in at 4.15pm after
collecting the children from school. The
more you know about your target audience,
the better you can target the marketing.
Once you understand who you are
Consider having an online presence on a parenting website
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
talking to, you can think more about what
you want to say to them. Key messages
could include:
• Look after your children’s eyes – children
don’t need to be able to read to have an
eye exam
• An eye exam can detect eye disease
before it causes serious problems
• Eye exams can help prevent trips and falls
• For working women and busy mothers a
key message is also ‘look after yourself’
Pick one of these messages to focus on
at a time; you may use the first as a way
to encourage families to bring children in
from a young age. Your other messages are
things that you can make staff aware of to
bring into conversations once people are in
the practice.
Why divide marketing by gender? Men
and women do respond differently to
marketing and they respond to different
words, colours and images. A targeted flyer
addressing the concerns of the mother will
achieve better results than a more general
practice flyer, for example. Listen to
mothers who attend your practice, ask
them what motivated them to book and
you will be able to refine your outreach
further. You can mock up some designs for
flyers and posters, show them to staff and
patients and get their views. All this will
help you come up with an effective
outreach campaign.
Alongside planning your marketing,
make sure that your practice is family
friendly: good level access and clutter free
corridors are a plus point whether you have
a toddler in a buggy or an elderly parent
with mobility problems. What else might
make your practice attractive to families?
Think about factors from space to play to a
good range of low vision aids.
As well as making your practice
welcoming, you need to reach out to
families where they are. Consider how you
might promote your practice in playgroups,
at the school gates, or via women’s groups
such as the WI or Townswomen’s Guild. A
well placed banner, a schedule of interesting
Case study: Speaking to toddler groups and schools
ABDO board member, Jo Holmes, is the
manager at Pilgrim Optical. She says: “We
were tasked with bringing more children
into the practice, so we looked at all ages,
from the day they are born to those taking
A-levels. We thought about how to
educate parents about the importance of
eye exams for their children and realised
that we can do this from a very young age.
We send our optometrist to visit health
visitors when they have their twice-yearly
meeting together with advice about
eyecare for babies and what advice they
can give to worried mums. In our practice
we start examining children from six
months of age.
“We also visit mother and toddler and
groups and make ourselves available for
advice during their coffee breaks. Another
contact is the local children’s centre. This is a
great way to access mums en mass. I try to
promote the message that children have
their hair cut, feet measured, they go to the
dentist regularly, please include the eye
exam too!
“The next age group that we reach out
to are the children in pre-schools. I take the
Kay cards, the cards for checking for colour
vision, and I draw the basic eye with the kids.
I give a covering letter to the teachers to give
to the parents telling them about what I have
talked about that day with their offspring
and reminding them that their children can
have their eyes examined on the NHS.
“I’m well known in the local primary
schools and often get asked to go in and talk
about eyes during science week, and healthy
eating week. I tend to do this during their
assemblies. I have touched base with the
secondary schools by promoting eye health
in the form of a spectacle design
competition. The winner had their entry
made up and I had either prescription lenses
glazed in or plano sunspecs.”
talks, distribution of flyers; mix and match
methods like this. Liaise with local parenting
magazines; might they want an occasional
column on looking after your child’s eyes?
Once you have decided who you want
to reach, the messages you want to share
and how you could reach them, look for a
hook. There might be a promotional week
coming up; a local or national event related
to age can be a chance to ask men and
women with elderly parents to think about
whether they are looking after their eyes.
Back to school time is an ideal period
during which to reach out to mums and
dads. This is another opportunity to contact
local schools, playgroups, nurseries and
parenting groups and see if they would be
interested in a talk too. Ask them about
who will be attending a talk so you can
offer age and stage appropriate messages,
and remember to check the ABDO
Members’ area online where there are a
number of PowerPoint presentations
already devised targeting parents and
children of different ages.
Back up local marketing with a good
online presence. Can you arrange to feature
on local parenting sites with eyecare tips?
How might you continue your campaign
messages on social media channels such as
Facebook or on your practice blog?
Chelle McCann is a social media
consultant and founder of Social Sparkle, an
agency that often devises campaigns
targeting parents. She says: “Know your
audience – chat to them and don’t just
pump out promo. Make sure you give them
issuable content and reply back to
comments. Check your insights and
statistics – this will help you see what your
audience responds to. And don’t be a
copycat – often social media has the same
repetitive feel. Think about how you can
stand out from the crowd.”
People take a number of prompts before
they take action. If you want to make sure
that mums think of your practice as the
number one in the area for family eyecare,
make sure that they see your promotional
materials online, in print and in the locality.
If you include advertising by the school
gate, an online presence on a parenting
website, flyers in a key target area and
something in the local paper, people will
get the series of gentle prompts that they
need to raise the importance of eyecare in
their minds and make it more likely that
they will think to book an eye appointment
for a family member, and that they will
book it at your practice.
the summer including a swinging 70s Flower
Power case with a paisley covering, red
telephone boxes and Big Ben on a London
themed case, and a new Summer Floral that
takes inspiration from the recent Chelsea
Flower Show.
Angela Beaumont, manager of Dunelm’s
accessories operation, said: “The stylish and
playful designs play on British themes and are
a real selling
point for
adding value
when selling a
pair of frames.”
Sausage dogs, paw prints and bones adorn
the Man’s Best Friend design in the latest
additions to Dunelm’s limited edition,
handmade spectacles case collection.
There are six new varieties in the 100strong collection, with a patriotic theme for
Jo Holmes
New doggie
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Proposed enhanced roles for ABDO Areas
was high on the agenda at the Consultation
Day with the Areas in May
Enhanced roles in focus
eld at the offices of the
Association of Optometrists
(AOP) in London on 20
May, the day began with a
welcome and update by
ABDO president, Peter Black.
Outlining discussions that had taken
place at meetings of a General Optical
Council (GOC) working group reviewing
legal supply, on which he served, Peter
suggested it was likely that in the future,
online suppliers would be required to have
sight of the original prescription or have it
verified by the issuing professional; a faxed
or electronically scanned copy might be
acceptable to reduce the administrative
burden on the originating practice. Once
the GOC had issued its revised standards,
ABDO would review its own professional
ABDO general secretary, Tony Garrett,
then highlighted the growing importance
and enhanced role of local optical
committees (LOCs), supported by the Local
Optical Committee Support Unit (LOCSU),
and explained that the ABDO board was
presently in discussions on ways of
involving more members in targeted local
work. Tony stressed that discussions were
only the start of the process, and a small
working group would be established with
Area representatives, with firm proposals put
to the next Consultation Day with the Areas.
Addressing attendees next, ABDO head
of policy and development, Barry Duncan,
mentioned the requirement, set out in an
intercollegiate document published a year
ago, that dispensing opticians in England
should undertake a Level 2 qualification in
Safeguarding; this was also likely to be
introduced in the rest of the UK. Despite
indications to the contrary, there was no
specific deadline but all practitioners would
eventually have to obtain the qualification.
After exploring other, very costly,
options the ABDO board had decided that
ABDO should provide its own Safeguarding
training for members and ABDO CET
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
There was much to feed back at the Consultation Day with the Areas in May
coordinator, Paula Stevens, was in the
process of developing this. It was hoped to
make the training available to all members
from the beginning of 2016, with the
possibility of a session at the ABDO
conference in September 2015 if the training
programme had been completed by then.
Barry Duncan then gave a presentation on
the possible future role of ABDO Areas,
reiterating that this represented initial ideas –
nothing had been decided. He outlined the
current position and acknowledged the
huge success of Areas’ activities, especially
in terms of CET. Continuing local
involvement was essential and in the light
of the five-year forward view from NHS
England and similar overviews from the
other UK nations, Barry suggested that now
was a good time to consider future
aspirations including local involvement
extending to engagement with other
The current Areas were based on a
complex geographical structure, explained
Barry, with widely differing membership
numbers, a complicated committee
structure with the Areas’ remit lacking
definition. “There is a real opportunity to
align Area boundaries within NHS regions,
and to extend the roles and remit of Areas
beyond the provision of CET,” Barry said.
The aim going forwards was to have
one dispensing optician on each LOC,
AOC and ROC, and for local members to
be involved in the commissioning process.
Local practitioners would identify local
opportunities for involvement in the
provision of eyecare in community practices,
for example low vision services, paediatric
eyecare and school vision screening, etc. It
was proposed to review Areas’ geographical
structure to take account of the NHS regions;
this would result in the need for each Area to
have a CET liaison and clinical commissioning
lead, Barry explained, adding: “In essence the
aim is to prepare for a future where dispensing
opticians were integral to eyecare provision.”
In order to take the project forwards, a
working group is being established to put
forward proposals to the next Consultation
Day with the Areas, with a view to making
recommendations to the board. Consultation
would then take place with the current
Barry Duncan outlines proposed
new role for the Areas
week joining. In addition, the website had
more than 122,000 users and over 288,000
page impressions. Google+ had 20,000 page
views. Pinterest and Instagram pages had
also recently been set up.
Antonia also highlighted a major radio
day in September linking with back-to-school
time and encouraging parents to have their
children’s eyesight checked. She asked for
members’ help in finding local opticians and
parents who would be willing to talk on
their local radio station about their
experiences in specific cases relating to
children's eyecare. She also urged members
to encourage parents to use the FAQs on
Facebook for information about eyecare.
Antonia Chitty updates members
on social media activities
Areas in December 2015 and January 2016.
If the proposals are agreed, training in
commissioning and enhanced services would
commence through LOCSU in spring 2016,
with implementation towards the end of
2016 or early 2017. “Clearly changes could
not happen overnight and each Area would
develop at its own pace,” Barry added.
The remainder of the meeting was devoted
to updates on other ABDO activities and
projects. ABDO course coordinator for
optical support programmes, Debbie Gigg,
gave a presentation on developments in the
provision by ABDO and ABDO College of
the educational elements of the Worshipful
Company of Spectacle Makers (WCSM)
qualifications for support staff in
manufacturing and retail. She outlined the
current WCSM qualifications, which “were
confusing for learners and employers, did
not target specific job roles, and contained
a number of options which overlapped
several qualifications”. Under the new
structure, provision had been streamlined to
make it easier for learners and employers to
Antonia Chitty, ABDO media consultant,
proceeded to updated the meeting on the
use of the FAQs section of ABDO’s website
that she had developed as part of the social
media campaign. She encouraged members
to provide ideas for topics and news items,
to raise the profile of eyecare and to
promulgate information about the role of
the profession. Antonia reported that
Twitter now had 1,000+ followers and
Facebook 1,504 followers with an extra 40 a
Sue Bennett, ABDO’s new
CET administrator
ABDO CET coordinator, Paula Stevens,
then introduced Sue Bennett, the new CET
administrator, and updated the meeting on
current CET provision. She noted that ABDO,
as a CET Provider, had 189 approved elements
in 12 learning modalities, and outlined the
points content of the latter. She was currently
working on expanding online interactive
modalities, although the interactive
element was proving difficult to achieve.
So far, Paula had developed online twopoint interactive case discussions, twopoint interactive presentation-led CET,
Area members listen to future plans
Sharing positive developments
three-point interactive event-led CET and
four-point competency modules. These
online modalities had been developed in
response to members’ feedback and pilot
schemes were currently underway.
Paula also reported that the GOC’s
proposed requirement that six CET points
each year should be obtained by interactive
means would not be introduced for the
2016-18 cycle. Statistics showed that there
had been a huge reduction in the number of
dispensing opticians who had only achieved
their points so far by text-based noninteractive learning, making the requirement
unnecessary. However, if the GOC did
decide that six points should be obtained
by interactive means each year, Paula
outlined the difficulties that might arise.
Closing the meeting, Peter Black, ABDO
president, highlighted all the positive
developments that had been discussed,
including the future scope of practice.
The next Consultation Day with the
Areas will be held on 18 November.
During proceedings, Peter Black
presented the Dispensing Optics
Readership Prize for the best CET
article in 2014 to Andrew Keirl for
his two part article: “What are you
on?”. The article reviewed
commonly used optical drugs and
the optical effects of systemic
drugs, as well as the effects of
illegal and recreational drugs.
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Barry Duncan talks to Nicky Collinson about his
hopes and plans for the future as newly appointed
ABDO head of policy and development
Working together
NC: What key progress has been made in
the regional Areas since you were appointed
as members’ support manager in 2012?
BD: One of my key objectives as ABDO
members’ support manager was to introduce
more structure and planning so we could
meet the needs of the new CET requirements.
Members are very busy, both in practice and
at home, so it was essential ABDO had in
place a CET scheme that allowed individuals
to plan accordingly to fulfill their points
requirements. Each year, the Areas have
responded to the requests made of them,
which has been excellent for the ABDO
Membership and in most cases something
unrecognised by the majority. Even this year
we have seen a massive change as to how we
go about our business. It has been the first
year there has been no charges out with the
membership fee for attendance at CET
events. The effort to achieve this was
significant but nonetheless extremely
satisfying that ABDO has done so.
NC: And what progress has been made in
a political sense?
BD: It can be difficult to measure political
progress, however, it is clear that ABDO has a
voice round the table nowadays and we are
most certainly taking the opportunity to tell
as many people as we can about why
dispensing opticians are integral to
community and secondary eyecare. Lots of
changes have occurred in recent years; we
now have the Optical Confederation, Clinical
Council for Eye Health Commissioning,
Optometry Scotland, Optometry Wales and
Optometry NI. When you add the General
Optical Council, the charity sector,
Department of Health and the devolved
governments, there are lots of people to get
round and be engaged with. It is, of course,
essential that we make progress in the next
few years and we move forward as a
profession – as standing still is almost
certainly not an option.
NC: Can you tell me about your new role
and remit?
BD: In the next few months I will concentrate
fully on the political front and look at how
ABDO can ensure our members are given as
many opportunities to progress as a
profession as possible. My role as ABDO head
of policy and development brings with it
great responsibility, therefore, with
immediate effect I will stop being an ABDO
practical examiner and reduce greatly my
participation in the delivery of ABDO CET.
Obviously, I will miss doing these things but
equally it is important to concentrate on the
requirements of this role as it carries great
responsibility and will no doubt evolve in the
near future as activity increases.
NC: How will your changed role benefit
members and the Association in a wider
BD: Historically, there has been limited
resource to fully engage with all
stakeholders/partners but that has changed
and hopefully we can begin to see the
benefits of someone working at this full
time. The speed of change is incredible in
optical politics at present so clearly the fact
we will be involved in everything presents
excellent opportunities.
There is a real sense of collaboration
between most of the optical bodies as
everyone recognises that needs in both the
community and secondary sector are
changing. The days of protectionism by
professions will hopefully stop in order to
provide a service within GOS and clinical
commissioning groups, etc, for the benefit of
all patients. I sincerely hope that in the
fullness of time, our members will be
afforded opportunities to participate in
these services, which frankly is well overdue.
NC: How will members be supported in
preparing for the new CET cycle from
January 2016?
BD: At this stage we do not anticipate much
change in the requirements, therefore, it is
full steam ahead for the new cycle. We will
continue to deliver CET to our members and
attempt to fulfill all the requirements where
possible. My only hope is that members
continue to support the Area events and
recognise the enormous work that goes on
behind the scenes to put on these events.
NC: What are your short-term and longterm goals?
BD: Short term it would be helpful to achieve
a few ‘wins’ politically. Safeguarding is
something we will deliver as an Association in
2016 but it goes without saying that the
platform to deliver this training exists already;
it would be fantastic if our members can
access it accordingly. In itself that might well
restore a bit of belief in our profession and
start sending out the right messages about
us as a profession.
Long-term it is a case of fighting our
corner at every given opportunity and being
in constant discussion with those who can
alter the direction of travel for dispensing
opticians. It is imperative that we all work
together to achieve success, so let’s hope
that we do. It won’t be for the lack of trying
or belief in our ability as dispensing opticians.
On yer bike!
The goal is to collectively cycle 25,000 miles and raise £1 for each mile cycled up to World Sight Day on 8 October.
To register and take part visit, and register your fundraising page at
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
This year’s ABDO Conference will expose the
holistic side of low vision management and how
we put patients first, writes Elaine Grisdale
Low vision focus
ne of the most popular
streams of the two
previous ABDO
conferences has been the
one dedicated to low
vision. Low vision is a core competency
that we all need to obtain in the CET
cycle. It is also a discipline that we can
study further through the increasingly
popular post-FBDO Honours Diploma in
The Assessment and Management of Low
Vision. The 2015 ABDO Conference and
Exhibition in Manchester will once again
offer two days of CET-approved low vision
lectures and workshops. We hope that as
well as hitting your GOC CET requirement,
attending the low vision events will
encourage members to think about
specialising later in an area which, with
our ageing population, will become
increasingly valuable.
Visual impairment can affect not only
the elderly but also children and adults. It
can be caused by congenital conditions,
injury or illness. Eye conditions leading to
visual impairment include cataract,
glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, macular
degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa.
Working in low vision means that you
become part of a multidisciplinary team
who manage the related conditions and
support people with visual impairment.
People in a multidisciplinary team often
include ophthalmologists, optometrists,
dispensing opticians, GPs, rehabilitation
workers, social workers, teachers and
charity network facilitators.
The CET offering this year explores the
holistic side of low vision management and
how we put the patient first. An array of
low vision specialist speakers will
communicate how interesting low vision
clinical practice can be, looking at areas such
as ocular pathology, epidemiology, lighting,
optical design, psychological adaptation and
devices for sensory substitution.
A new and must-see element of the low
vision journey will be visible in the
registration area of Manchester Central.
Having first met Andy Guiel at Optrafair in
2014, I had the chance to have a guided
walk with a guide dog, wearing a blindfold,
walking in the shoes of a blind person for
only 20 minutes and realising just how
challenging life as a blind person is. This
experience has stayed with me and I have
kept in contact with Guide Dogs since.
To give people the chance to experience
this first hand, we have asked Andy and a team
of people from Guide Dogs to be with us for
the weekend. As part of our CET offering,
there will be a three-point interactive
session with one CET point for the lecture,
and potentially a further two points for an
interactive exercise involving a guided walk
and the sensory tunnel. The sensory tunnel has
differing floor surfaces and wall textures as
well as a selection of varying noises to
simulate walks in what (normally) would be
normal situations – but when you have no or
little sight, what is ‘normal’ can be frightening.
Andy has many years’ experience of
working internationally with Guide Dogs
and their owners. He joined Guide Dogs in
1973 as a Guide Dog Mobility Instructor,
Andy Guiel and his Guide Dog, Nathalie
training the dogs and their blind owners. He
served 25 years at the Wokingham Training
Centre before leaving to run his own canine
behavioural clinic, supporting clients
throughout the UK and USA. After this, he
worked with the Royal Netherlands Guide
Dog School for four years before being given
the opportunity to start the Guide Dogs
Education and Demonstration Team in 2006.
Andy has selected and trained his
Demonstration Dogs to be able to show
all aspects of Guide Dog work in any
environment, often working in front of large
audiences. His dogs are confident, calm and
adaptable, which is essential as they often
work with vulnerable people of all ages
including sighted people under blindfold –
which was my experience and hopefully will
be that of many more people during the
conference weekend too. We hope that you
will come along and enjoy the lectures and
workshops given by our team of experts, as
well as meeting Andy and his Guide Dog,
Download the full programme and
book your place online at
“Most of us take our daily journeys for granted in the comfort of knowing we
can walk safely along a pavement and crossroads without the constant fear of
accidents. This is a luxury that people with sight loss do not have.
Please come and join our Guide Dog Demonstration highlighting the
difficulties of sight loss, the emotional impact this can have on the individual
and the dangers that a blind person faces each time they leave their home.
“Low vision isn’t just about magnifiers – it is about coping and giving advice
to people who are losing or who have lost their sight. Understanding such a lifechanging thing cannot be comprehended fully by reading about it in a book.
“During the demonstration you will see how a Guide Dog can negotiate
hazards and solve problems that would otherwise be almost impossible without
sight. More importantly, you will be able to see just how these wonderful
partnerships are the key to unlock a completely new life for a blind person.
“I will also be putting on ‘rolling’ demonstrations for small groups through
the conference centre and on to the street, which will give you a better
understanding of the ways in which our dogs guide their blind owners,
negotiating crowds, steps, junctions and crossings. etc.
“You will see how the dog uses its initiative and intelligence to assess
situations and safely guide its blind owner in a calm and relaxed manner while
adapting to the constantly changing environment.”
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Described as “an exceptional conference” with a “fantastic buzz”, the 2015
BCLA conference assembled the global contact lens community in Liverpool
for three days of education and business, reports Nicky Collinson
Global contact lens
community ‘Comes Together’
eld at the ACC Liverpool
from Friday 29 to Sunday
31 May, the 39th British
Contact Lens Association
(BCLA) Clinical Conference
& Exhibition – #BCLAComeTogether –
delivered a record 69 CET points, plus
seven COPE-accredited sessions for North
American delegates. According to the
Association, attendance figures exceeded
all expectations with a record number of
delegates arriving on the Friday to register
onsite for the full conference – the first in
a new two-yearly schedule.
The conference saw optometrist and
long-standing BCLA council member, Brian
Tompkins, installed as BCLA president and
contact lens optician Keith Tempany as
President Elect.
At the BCLA
AGM on
the Sunday
afternoon the
following new
Council members
were announced:
Attendance expectations
Jonathon Bench
were exceeded
and Michael
Kilpartrick (optometric representatives) and
Nick Atkins and David Samuel (contact lens
optician representatives). Also joining the
Council as medical representative is
Professor Sunil Shah.
Speaking after the conference, Brian
said: “BCLA 2015 really #CameTogether
with knowledge sharing, interaction and
Newly installed BCLA president,
Brian Tompkins
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
fun. My job is to make sure that during the
two-year gap between clinical conferences
we #StayTogether. Having the chance to
lead the best contact lens organisation in
the world is something I cannot wait to
begin as BCLA President. I hope to bring
enthusiasm, passion and fun into every
aspect of the contact lens world.”
Asked for his thoughts on the event,
BCLA clinical conference consultant,
Professor James Wolffsohn, said: “The buzz
at the conference was fantastic; around
1,000 people from across the globe hearing
and debating the latest research and its
implications for clinical practice today –
and for the future – on topics such as
myopia control, the correction of presbyopia,
minimising complications, fitting complex
corneas and managing dry eyes.
“In particular the retinal risks of even
low levels of myopia became very evident,
which will radically change the way we
need to manage patients in the future; the
ease of techniques such as orthokeratology
were demonstrated live during the conference
including the follow-up, but there are also a
range of soft lens designs becoming available.
The social programme was also not to be
missed with the Awards Dinner in the
stunning Liverpool Anglican Cathedral a real
high-point,” James concluded.
#BCLAComeTogether saw the inaugural
BCLA Myopia Management Day take place
on Friday 29 May, bringing together a
“Biggest and best BCLA panel ever”
global ‘who’s who’ of the field with delegates
witnessing what BCLA CEO, Cheryl Donnelly,
described as
“the biggest and
best BCLA panel
discussion ever”.
The day also
saw a live
ortho-k fitting
facilitated by
Shelly Bansal,
ably assisted by
BCLA president
Live ortho-k fitting
elect, Keith
Tempany, and BCLA council member,
Professor Christine Purslow.
From Ian Flitcroft discussing the
epidemiology of myopia, to Dr Nicola Logan
arguing the case for spectacles treatment,
through to Professor Brien Holden
presenting the case for multifocal contact
lens treatment, the consensus was that
myopia was not just an Asian problem but a
global one, with myopic maculopathy a “public
health time bomb” waiting in the wings.
Delegates were asked to decide whether
to ‘treat’ or ‘correct’ (Ian Flitcroft), to
consider the potential rebound effects of
any treatment/s, and “to think about the
future beyond what’s sitting in the chair”
(Kate Gifford) because by 2050 there would
be close to 2.5 billion myopes on the
planet, including 55 per cent of the UK
population (Professor Holden).
Immediate past BCLA president, Susan
Bowers, said of the day: ”I thought that the
speakers really were able to empower those
practitioners attending to start fitting myopia
control lenses by looking at the risks of
myopia from an epidemiology base.”
The three-day programme also included
a wide selection of specialist symposia,
educational courses, a dedicated business
track, rapid-fire sessions, sponsor showcases,
a product and technology exhibition and
more CET workshops than ever before.
Bringing some humour to proceedings was a
Contact lens and technology showcase
‘Four men in a pub session’ on the Sunday
afternoon. This saw subject heavyweights,
Dr Noel Brennan, Professor Phil Morgan,
Professor Lyndon Jones and Professor Eric
Papas take part in ‘The great debate: silicone
hydrogels versus hydrogels’, with BCLA
president, Brian Tompkins, tending the bar.
Commenting on this year’s programme,
optometrist Drew Thompson, said: “The
programme was, as always, at the forefront
of contact lens practice and optometry. I
took away lots of ideas on how to improve
my clinical practice and maximise its business
potential in several areas – not just contact
lenses. I also received my BCLA Fellowship,
which is a huge achievement for my practice.”
Contact lens optician, Suzanne Czerwinski,
had this to say: “Overall I thought this year’s
conference was exceptional. From the venue
to the logistics, from the exhibitors to the
lectures, I think the BCLA should be proud
of such a world-class event. Socially, I
particularly enjoyed the relaxed approach
and atmosphere of the Friday evening drinks
reception. I attended some excellent lectures
and workshops, one of the highlights being
the Johnson & Johnson Vision Care 1-Day
Acuvue Moist Brand Multifocal presentation.
A powerful message on the ease of multifocal
fitting was demonstrated at the Acuvue
stand later when my husband was fitted
successfully with a brand new multifocal in
less than 10 minutes!
“Perhaps the highlight for me overall
was being asked by Professor Phil Morgan
to appear on a practitioner panel during a
lecture on staining. Although a little nervous,
as it was my first time presenting as part of
a panel, I really enjoyed the experience.
“There are many things I will take away
from the conference but the best bits for
me are the many things that I learned that
will help me complete my Contact Lens
Honours course. Having qualified as a contact
lens optician five years ago, at Specsavers in
Nottingham, I feel inspired to continue to
make a difference and a contribution – and
feel that this is just the beginning.”
Optometrist Indie Grewal commented:
“For me BCLA 2015 was about exploring
new concepts and enhancing current thinking
with friends and peers – all balanced with
‘Four men in a pub’
an excellent social agenda with an inspired
venue for the Awards Dinner.”
As always, the BCLA took great pride in
recognising and honouring the achievements
of those practising, researching and working
within the global contact lens community.
Professor Fiona Stapleton was presented
with the 2015 BCLA Medal, Benjamin
Coldrick with the 2015 Da Vinci Award
winner, and Dr Nicole Carnt and Dr Simon
Kilvington with the 2015 Dallos Award.
Wolfgang Sickenberger of Ernst Abbe
University, Germany, was the winner of the
2015 Photographic Competition, for his image
of “Piggyback lens with air bubbles and
mucus between soft and rigid contact lens
in high magnification. Slit lamp technique –
retro illumination with offset beam’.
The winner of the Poster Competition
was Dorota H. Szczesna-Iskander with ‘Dry
contact lens, poor wettability and visual
performance’. In second place was Renee
Reeder with ‘Abnormal rosacea as a
differential diagnosis in corneal scarring’,
and in third place was Maria J. GonzalezGarcia with, ‘Dry effect of the environmental
conditions on tear inflammatory mediators
concentration in contact lens wearers’. All
prizewinners received a £100 Amazon
voucher, courtesy of Elsevier.
This year’s Awards Dinner had a
Swinging 60s Beatles theme and was held
at the Liverpool Anglican Cathedral with
music provided by the Mersey Beatles. Many
of the 21 new BCLA Fellows, who had taken
and passed their viva voce examination on
the Friday of the conference, were present
to collect their certificates from the
outgoing and incoming presidents.
During the course of the evening, which
included the Presidential handover, Tony
Martin, known as ‘The father of Acuvue’,
was named as the winner of the 2015 BCLA
Industry Award. Mr Martin said: “It’s a great
honour to accept this award, and I do so on
behalf of all of the team members who
were part of the development of Acuvue.
We knew that introducing a disposable soft
contact lens had the potential to
dramatically change the market, but I’m not
Beatles fun at the Awards Dinner
sure we ever really thought about how
successful it would become.”
The night also saw Honorary Life
Memberships of the BCLA awarded to past
presidents, Dr Catharine Chisholm and
Professor James Wolffsohn.
BCLA CEO Cheryl Donnelly, who was
instrumental in evolving the BCLA Clinical
Conference and Exhibition into a biennial,
three-day event, reflected afterwards: “This
year’s conference marked the start of a new
era for the BCLA, showcasing what its
members, partners and exhibitors can
expect going forward. The new format,
including the bite sized sessions integrating
research and clinical practice papers, which
ran throughout the conference, and the
Specialist Symposium on Myopia
Management, was very well received.
“We look forward to building on this
year’s conference with more member focused
activities during the remainder of 2015 and
throughout 2016, culminating in the
Clinical Conference in 2017,” Cheryl added.
Over the coming weeks, many of this
year’s presentations will be available for
BCLA members to view on the BCLA’s
website. The 40th BCLA Clinical Conference
and Exhibition will take place in 2017. The
dates and venue will be announced in due
course. The next date in the BCLA Events
diary is the 2015 Presidential Address to be
delivered by Brian Tompkins on Wednesday 7
September at the Royal College of
Physicians, London.
For more information about BCLA
events and how to join the Association, visit, email [email protected]
or call 0207 580 6661.
Honorary Life Membership for Professor
James Wolffsohn
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Proudly cycling for the
Cycle for sight and help people around the world get access to eye care.
Get fit, have fun and raise funds!
Join in and collectively cycle the world – 25,000 miles!
Every mile makes a difference
Start anytime from now until World Sight Day – Thursday 8th October
Are you up for the Challenge?
• You can choose to do as little or many miles as you
like anywhere in the country, on your own, a static bike
or as part of group, or
• Join an organised CET cycle organised by Eyecare on
Sunday 30th August
For more information email [email protected] or visit
For the CET cycle by Eyecare visit:
Frequently asked questions
answered by Kim Devlin FBDO (Hons) CL
The query this month was from a member who had
dispensed a walk-in prescription, which then became a nontolerance case; did they have to refund or was that up to the
prescriber who had made an error?
These are the patients who make your heart sink aren’t
they? They’ve been to every optician in the town, never happy
but would like you to try your best. It is your choice if you
dispense an outside prescription or not, but if you do dispense
it, you also take on the responsibility if they then non-tol.
On first glance it can look harsh; you take the prescription
at face value, spend a long time selecting frames and lens
design. Extra care is taken with measurements and they still fail
to ‘get on’ with them.
There are some safeguards. You could neutralise the
previous (always perfect) spectacles to check if the prescription
has changed significantly, noting the optical centre positions
and original lens design. You may even go to the lengths of
sitting the patient in the consulting room chair to show them
on the chart exactly what the new prescription looks like – and
still they don’t like it.
But, and it is a ‘but’, get it right and you have a patient (and
their family/friends and neighbours) for life. That is the chance
you take with such patients. Decide now, in the calm of a quiet
moment, whether such patients are the type you would be
happy to dispense and spend time trying at least to sort out? If
not, and no-one has to dispense a prescription they don’t wish
to, decline politely and firmly with: “We only dispense our own
prescriptions I’m afraid”.
It is to no-one’s advantage to play ‘he said/they said’ with
such patients. If they are unhappy with the final product, it is in
everyone’s best interest that the patient gets satisfaction from
the supplier (even if the possible fault was in the original
prescription) and give a refund, if that is what it takes.
The cost of such occurrences must be factored in to the
pricing structure of the practice as such things will always
happen, whatever the source of the prescription.
Kim Devlin
is chair of
Advice and
Past FAQs are available for reference on the ABDO website at
The seventh annual Vision UK conference took place on
18 June at Central Hall Westminster, London. Titled
‘Working together to deliver the UK Vision Strategy’, it
was the largest Vision UK conference to date and
welcomed more than 550 attendees.
Lord Holmes of Richmond MBE
The opening session included a keynote address from
Lord Holmes of Richmond MBE, who highlighted the
importance of collaboration, stating that “we must continue
to work together to make the UK Vision Strategy a reality”.
Through a new format of five conference streams
focused on delivering aspects of the UK Vision Strategy, the
conference shared best practice and highlighted the work
that has been happening across the UK.
Vision UK 2015 was also supported by Justin Tomlinson
MP, Minister for Disabled People, who said: “Almost two
million people in the UK live with sight loss and Vision UK
2015 is vital in bringing together the various groups and
organisations that work on their behalf. The Royal National
Institute of Blind People can be proud of supporting such a
worthwhile and well-attended event.”
UK Vision Strategy also created a fully accessible
conference experience for all attendees with the first Vision
UK smartphone application. Delegates could access the
programme, vote in the poster competition and network
with other attendees through the app, which was available
in IOS, Android and web formats.
The day concluded with the People’s Panel, which was
made up of speakers who are blind or partially sighted from
each of the five conference streams. Chaired by Vidar
Hjardeng, diversity consultant for ITV News, the panel
shared their pledges from the event which included
continued emphasis on the importance of accessible
technology, hearing what service users have to say and
collaborating to influence decision makers.
Fazilet Hadi, lead
officer, UK Vision
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
Jobs & notices
Optician Index - April 2015 Summary
• Practice turnover at 180 Index points is the highest value
since August 2009
• The number of eye examinations increased by five per cent
from last month and April 2014 to 108 Index points
• The volume of spectacles dispensed has increased by one
per cent year-on-year matching the increase in the number
of eye examinations
• New contact lens new fits are seven per cent higher than
April last year at 126 Index points, annual growth is positive
at three per cent
• Solution sales are also seven per cent higher than April last
year at 100 Index points, annual growth is positive at six per
cent but the trend is decelerating
The full April 2015 report was published in the
29 May issue of Optician
The ABDO Golf Society will play for
the Stercks Martin Silver Salver on
Thursday 10 September 2015 at
Harborne Golf Club Birmingham.
This will also be a joint meeting with
the Optical Golf Society. The Salver
competition is open to qualified
dispensing opticians. Guests are
welcome. Entry forms will be sent to
society members in mid July.
For further enquiries please contact
Mike Stokes at [email protected]
Required for a forward thinking independent
practice in South Manchester (Wilmlsow).
The position would suit a newly qualified or adaptable individual
who is FASHION CONSCIOUS and CONFIDENT with luxury/niche
eyewear. A POSITIVE ATTITUDE and clear communication skills
are essential.
You will benefit from continued training and development in a
forward thinking and supportive environment, 26 days holiday, as
well as profit-related bonus.
Please email your CV with covering letter to Deepak Oberai at
[email protected] or post to:
Albert Road Opticians, 18 Albert Road, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5HT.
Closing date – 31 July 2015 – for
Registration of Supervisors and
Practices for those wishing to sit
the winter 2015 Contact Lens
Practical Examinations
Those planning to sit the winter 2015 practical
examinations for the Certificate in Contact
Lens Practice, which are held in January 2016,
should note that the closing date for
registering Supervisors and Practices for
Provisional Approval is 31 July 2015.
Candidates wishing to sit the CL practical
examination in winter 2015 must have at the
time of their examination application, and
throughout the period up to and including
their practical examination, a supervisor and
practical experience practice on the current
ABDO approved register – or have been given
provisional approval following completion of a
supervisor/practice registration application form.
Completed Registration application forms
relevant to the winter 2015 sitting must reach
the ABDO offices in Kent by 31 July 2015. Late
arrival of the relevant documentation will mean
deferment to the following examination session.
Registration documents are available upon
request from Examinations and Registration
Department on 01227 732921/732924 or
email [email protected]
If someone in your practice has picked up a pre-school child with a lazy eye, and the parents would be willing to appear in the media,
please let Antonia know by emailing [email protected] any time until 15 August
To place an advert, telephone 0781 273 4717 or email [email protected]
Booking deadline for the August issue is Thursday 9 July. Special rate for ABDO members
Dispensing Optics JULY 2015
he 2015 ABDO Conference and Exhibition
will be held at Manchester Central - an
award winning venue located in the heart of
city centre Manchester. As well as an exciting
CET conference programme and unique
networking opportunities, the event features an
exhibition to showcase the latest developments
in fashion, technology and business solutions.
Exhibitors confirmed so
far include: • ABDO College
• Adidas • AOP • Brulimar
• Essilor • Eyes • Hilco • Hoya
• Maui Jim • Mondottica
• National Eyecare Group
• Nikon • Ocuco • OWP
• Per formance Finance
• Safilo • Shamir
• Sight Care Group
• Stepper • Tokai Optical
• Topcon • Ultravision
• William Morris • Zeiss
Association of
of British
British Dispensing
Dispensing Opticians
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September 2015
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Let us further your career
ABDO College provides comprehensive
education for dispensing opticians and is
currently accepting applications for a range
of different courses. Some of the reasons
why you should make ABDO College your first
choice to either start or further your career in
optics are:
• An extensive range of courses to suit your
individual needs
• Dedicated and experienced academic staff
• Friendly and supportive learning environment
• Consistently high theory and practical
examination results
• Helpful course tutors
• Vibrant and positive attitude towards students
• Committed to the furtherance of
dispensing optics
• Established by the profession for the profession
• A proven track record of success
The Contact Lens Certificate course provides
an ideal opportunity for opticians to further their
career by specialising in contact lenses. The
course leads to the ABDO Level 6 Certificate
in Contact Lens Practice qualification, enabling
registration on the General Optical Council
specialty register for contact lens dispensing.
Course features
• A one year course commencing in
September 2015
• Two separate weeks block release
at Godmersham
• Block release accommodation can be provided
Entry requirements
• ABDO Fellowship Diploma and GOC registration
or for existing students a successful pass in the
final theory examinations
• Qualified, registered optometrists and
ophthalmologists are also eligible to enrol
Application deadline: August 2015
For further information and application forms
for these and other courses, or to request a
copy of the ABDO College Prospectus, please
contact the ABDO College Courses Team on
01227 738 829 (Option 1)
or email [email protected]
ABDO College Operational Services,
Godmersham Park, Godmersham,
Canterbury, Kent CT4 7DT