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Domiciliary eye care

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Domiciliary eye care is provided to people who are unable to visit a practice unaccompanied due to a mental, physical or learning disability. For this patient group, many of whom are vulnerable adults, good eye care can have an enormous impact on their independence and wellbeing. Read on to learn more. 

High quality eye care should be available to all patients, regardless of whether the service is delivered in the patient's home or traditional primary care settings - e.g. high street practice. We encourage all domiciliary providers to read and follow the Optical Confederation's Domiciliary Eyecare Committee's Code of Practice.

If you want to provide NHS funded domiciliary eyecare, please see GOS contracts.

If you are concerned that another domiciliary eye care provider has breached Optical Confederation's Code of Practice for Domiciliary Eyecare, you can ask the Domiciliary Independent Adjudicator to investigate the matter by emailing [email protected]

Other guidance

The Optical Confederation has produced a variety of guidance which is either specific to or relevant for domiciliary providers.

Other sources:

You might find it useful to share the following resources with local patients and carers:

If you, or a person you care for, needs an eye test but is unable to visit a high street practice unaccompanied - e.g. because of a mental, physical or learning disability - you can have the test in your own home.

You can find more information in this: Guide to sight tests at home.

Optical professionals working in domiciliary settings aim to work within the principles described in the domiciliary eyecare Code of Practice

The Domiciliary Eyecare Committee has, together with Care England, also produced a letter to highlight to care professionals and care home managers the role they can play in helping to ensure that people living in residential care homes receive high quality, personalised eye care.

If you are concerned about how you or someone in your care has been treated by a domiciliary eye care provider, you can ask the Domiciliary Independent Adjudicator to investigate the matter by emailing [email protected].

Read the Independent Adjudicator's terms of reference.

The Optical Confederation's Domiciliary Eyecare Committee (DEC) brings together representatives from domiciliary service providers and the optical bodies (ABDO, the AOP, FODO, Optometry Scotland, Optometry Wales and Optometry Northern Ireland, and the College of Optometrists as observers). It is committed to promoting the highest standards of care for domiciliary patients and is active in lobbying for equal access to eyecare. The DEC developed and encourages all providers of domiciliary services to follow its Code of Practice.

Contact the committee: [email protected]


Originally published: September 2018

Reviewed: January 2020

Next review date: March 2022


The Domiciliary Eyecare Committee (DEC) guidance was updated in July, August 2021 and September.

View DEC guidance and statement published in July 2021, and DEC guidance published August 2021. 

Previous DEC guidance published in June 2020 together with relevant statements can be viewed by clicking the relevant link. 1. DEC statement - meeting the eye health needs of vulnerable individuals during the next stages of the pandemic. 2. Guidance< - meeting the eye health needs of shielding, isolating and domiciliary patients during the coronavirus (covid-19) pandemic. 3. DEC statement - Working safely during COVID-19 in other people's homes - Implications for domiciliary eye care providers. 

Info: January 2020, as part of the FODO website upgrade, the layout changed, GOS information was removed as a new section of the FODO site explains this in more detail, and patient information was simplified.  

References and notes

The next review was originally planned for December 2021. This was changed due to prioritising work during the pandemic.