Breakthrough standards for providers and clinical teams offering refractive surgery, and which propose new protections for UK patients, have been launched today.
These new standards are intended to ensure patients get the highest quality of care across the board. They are patient-focussed, including new checks and balances on the way a patient’s consent is sought for refractive procedures.
The standards have been defined by a group of leading ophthalmic surgeons and other experienced eye care professionals, along with input from a wide range of stakeholders, including regulators, professional bodies, providers, eye care charities as well as individual patients.
David Hewlett, chief executive of FODO, said: “Eye health needs are expanding rapidly and ophthalmology, optometry and optics are changing to meet new demands. Increasingly professionals are employed or contracted to work in multi-professional teams to meet patients’ growing needs and expectations. These breakthrough standards clearly point the way forward.”
David Teenan, a leading ophthalmic surgeon and a member of the Expert Panel that produced the standards, said: “These standards will be welcomed by surgeons, optometrists and other clinicians as a pioneering development for the sector. They offer a guide to best practice which is based on the latest ophthalmic research and clinical evidence. This represents a significant step forward that will help clinicians collectively and consistently achieve and deliver to their patients the best quality outcomes.”
The General Medical Council’s Guidance for doctors who offer cosmetic interventions – recognising that it had been developed for doctors only – suggested that the basic principles might provide a helpful framework for other professions. These standards build upon that framework for all professionals and providers, especially those working in multi-professional clinical teams.
The standards have been launched by ABDO, ACLM, FODO and FMO – members of the Optical Confederation, representing community eye care providers. Consultation on the initial draft ran from 2 February 2017 – 7 April 2017.