Chairman Update

310003_525864154141006_266348921_nHello and welcome to the new look Optometry Northern Ireland website. We hope you like it and any comments and feedback is appreciated.

I am also starting a new regular chairman’s update to keep people abreast of what ONI is working on.

For the foreseeable future the main focus will be on the delivery of the “Developing Eye Care Partnerships” strategy which covers all aspects of eye care services in Northern Ireland. Optometry plays a major role in the delivery of the strategy outcomes and this is reflected in the representation optometry (both hospital and community) has in the five task groups. Please find a link to the strategy below.

Probably the main areas of work here will be the development of care pathways for particular eye conditions and what optometry’s role will be within that. The glaucoma pathway is almost complete and as you probably know this has resulted in the Local Enhanced Service for optometry around repeat measures using contact tonometry. This pathway will soon also offer all optometrists the chance to work as “COSIs” (Community Optometrists with a Special Interest) in the new glaucoma service based at the Shankhill Health and Wellbeing centre under the supervision of ophthalmology glaucoma consultants. These jobs have not been released yet but will be found on the following website.

The next pathway for development will be for the diagnosis and management of the “acute eye”. Many similar pathways have been developed across the UK with optometry playing a major role.

I feel optometry is extremely well placed to provide many enhanced services which will ensure that people have improved and timely access to good quality eye care close to their homes.

Best wishes

David Barnes
Chairman Optometry NI

About Optometry Northern Ireland

Optometry Northern Ireland was established from the Negotiating committee for Northern Ireland and has representation from the main associations for optometrists and dispensing opticians in N.I. Local Optometric Committees in Northern Ireland are also represented. The reason for our formation was to present a united voice to the Northern Ireland Department of Health, politicians, media and others.

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