The Federation of Ophthalmic and Dispensing Opticians (FODO) Annual General Meeting took place in London on 14 May with chair, Lynda Oliver, setting out how the organisation was successfully transitioning to a new operating model to scale up its strategic work in protecting and advancing eye care in the UK and Ireland, as well as supporting its growing number of members especially among SMEs and independents.
Linda Oliver explained how FODO was committed to standing up for eye health and ensuring services were protected and enhanced during the next wave of NHS reforms. She added that the “spirit of co-operation” was vital if the sector was to protect eye care services through what will be “choppy waters” and that FODO would continue to work with stakeholders that shared the goal of high quality and accessible eye care for all.
Harjit Sandhu (pictured), FODO managing director, said that the organisation was now looking at innovative and sustainable ways of meeting increasing eye health needs in the UK and Ireland. He said that “without change there are significant risks of rationing as we have seen with cataract operations, or simply not having the capacity to provide vital care, as we have seen with glaucoma” and that “people should no longer have to forego eye care or lose their sight for want of capacity”.
Harjit added that it was “now vital for FODO to refocus on protecting and advancing eye care so that individuals can access the sight saving care and vision correction that they need whatever their age and wherever they live in the UK or Ireland”.
David Hewlett, FODO group director for leadership, transformation and strategic partnerships, commenting on innovation and the future workforce, said that, “FODO members have always been at the leading edge of innovation and are ready for these challenges. This includes playing our full part in shaping a new workforce through practice placements for students and ongoing training and development for clinicians at all stages of their careers.”
At the AGM John Hopcroft (Boots Opticians) and Josie Forte (Specsavers) were both elected as new FODO board directors, and Adrian Street (Norville Opticians) was re-elected as FODO lead director for SME businesses. The FODO group also updated its Articles of Association.