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17 February 2023

FODO member update – 17 February

This week:

FODO consultations

  • Members have until 28 February to provide feedback on our proposed name change. Read more.

Scientists work on quicker way to detect papilloedema

The BBC reports that neuro-ophthalmologist Dr Denise Atan of the University of Bristol is leading a study funded by the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) into guidelines for detecting papilloedema.

Dr Alyson Huntley, senior research fellow and the study's co-lead, said: "The strength of the study is that we are taking an integrated approach involving health professionals and the public across the eye care pathway."

The researchers said they hoped the NIHR study would develop new guidelines and publicity in 2024 that would save lives. 

New research to understand myopia management under way

Researchers at Aston University specialising in myopia have started work on how myopia management strategies affect children. A £500,000 grant will fund the research to better understand the impacts of myopia management interventions on vision and visual behaviour in children. Learn more

RCOphth publishes first annual report on AMD audit

The Royal College of Ophthalmologists (RCOphth) has published the first annual report on the NOD AMD Audit. It includes an analysis of 20,452 eyes treated for wet AMD and shows more than 90% retained 'stable' vision at the end of the first year of treatment. In addition, 20% experienced significant improvement and 40% had good vision. The report also says 'treatment appeared to be safe' with a low incidence of presumed infectious endophthalmitis. 

Out of hours and emergency eye care

Eye casualty attendances are estimated to be 20-30 per 1,000 population each year, says the RCOphth. It has reminded its members of College guidance on implementing essential out of hours and emergency services. Read more

Other sector news

Policy updates

Are you using FutureNHS?

If you are a FODO member in England, are you using the FutureNHS, the online NHS community for healthcare providers and professionals.  FutureNHS Eye Care Hub includes commissioning advice, model pathways and plans and other resources. Creating an account will also allow you to access resources, for example an Excel sheet providing a competencies and qualification summary for primary and secondary care optometrists, dispensing opticians, orthoptists and other eye care team members.

PQ provides snapshot of ophthalmology workforce

Responding to a Parliamentary Question from APPG Chair Marsha De Cordova MP, Minister Neil O'Brien confirmed that as of October 2022, there were 2,974 full-time equivalent doctors working in the ophthalmology specialism in the NHS in England.

Healthcare regulation

The Department of Health and Social Care, on behalf of the UK government and the devolved legislatures, published Regulating anaesthesia associates and physician associates today. It is a public consultation on the draft legislation to bring physician associates and anaesthesia associates into regulation.

The consultation is the first part of the government's review of the regulatory system for healthcare professionals across the UK. The government has also published its response to the previous Regulating healthcare professionals, protecting the public consultation, to which FODO responded on behalf of members.

FODO is analysing the government's response and will update members on any relevant strategic details. Initial points to note:

  • Most respondents agreed that student registers should be abolished.
  • Proposals still being developed about the registration of optical businesses will be included in legislation to reform the legal frameworks for the GPhC, PSNI and GOC.
  • The UK and devolved governments plan to remove the requirement for regulators to set up specific committees and provide the power for regulators to establish their own committee structure.
  • Pages 110-173 cover feedback on the fitness to practise process.

IFC examines the NHS backlog

The IFC looks at One year on from the backlog recovery plan: what next for NHS waiting lists?

NICE consultation

NICE is consulting on 'Highly Specialised Technology. Lenadogene nolparvovec for treating Leber's hereditary optic neuropathy caused by the G11778A ND4 mitochondrial mutation [ID1410]'. FODO does not intend to respond at this stage, but any member who wishes us to do so can email [email protected]







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