The Association of British Dispensing Opticians (ABDO) is the professional body for dispensing opticians – working for dispensing opticians and advancing the profession in the UK and worldwide.
Dispensing opticians are healthcare professionals registered with the statutory regulator for the optical professions, the General Optical Council.
Dispensing opticians are also able to gain a further qualification that enables them to register as contact lens opticians.
ABDO’s Strategic Plan will guide its work for the five years from 2022 to 2026. You can read the Strategic Plan here.
ABDO’s vision is that by 2026 it will have:
The following values will support ABDO’s work on behalf of members:
ABDO’s Annual Plan
Each year ABDO publishes an Annual Plan showing how it is working towards its vision and enabling us to respond to new developments.
ABDO was formed in 1986 when its predecessors, the Association of Dispensing Opticians and the Faculty of Dispensing Opticians, were merged following the Health and Social Security Act of 1984.
The profession of dispensing opticians has been regulated voluntarily since 1926 and, as a statutory profession, by the Opticians Act since 1958.
The Association is governed by a board of directors, which consists of nine full members of the Association elected by members’ ballot. The board has a non-voting adviser.
The board is served by the secretariat of the Association headed by the general secretary Sir Anthony Garrett CBE HonFBDO.
The president and vice president are elected by the board from among its number. The term of office, for both the president and vice president, is normally two years.
ABDO Regional Structure
ABDO is divided into the following regions within the UK:
Within each region, a Regional Lead is supported by Sub Regional Leads who between them look after the interests of ABDO members at a local level.