LOCSU Board publishes new sector strategy

Following the outcomes from a board strategy workshop in December, LOCSU has developed a new set of objectives critical for the community optical sector in England.

The new turbo-charged blueprint – called a ‘A Breakthrough Strategy for Optics‘ – aims to set the sector on a faster and broader course to achieve its main objective of seeing all the national pathways adopted by all CCGs, nationwide.

The headline goals include doubling the number of CCGs with a Minor Eye Conditions Service (MECS) by March 2017 and achieving an 80 per cent target for MECS within two years.

LOCSU plans to achieve its aims for the sector by stepping up the capacity of the team of (renamed) Commissioning Leads working across England, and providing specific additional support for LOCs in the mobilisation and monitoring of services, along with data collection/analysis which will be crucial in driving the increase in activity.

The enhanced team necessary to deliver the demanding targets set by the LOCSU board will require an increase in the LOCSU levy from 0.4 per cent of GOS sight test fees back to its original level of 0.5 per cent from April 2016.

Publishing ‘A Breakthrough Strategy for Optics’, LOCSU’s managing director Katrina Venerus said: “The new Strategy is not so much about the direction of travel, as our overall objective remains the same, but it is about the speed and scale at which we need to achieve success. We stand at a crossroads and at a tectonic time for the sector. While we can be pleased about the successes that LOCSU has supported LOCs to achieve so far, the LOCSU board has concluded that the sector has to seize the moment and take this bold step forward. Technological changes, the NHS open to new care models including service redesign, a greater focus on community services by the multiples and the threat of external competitors mean we must ask ourselves: ‘If not us, who? If not now, when?’ The board believes that this is the critical moment. We need to land a killer punch, set demanding targets and invest accordingly to achieve them. With the AGM season approaching, we are asking LOCs give their backing to the Breakthrough Strategy for Optics and to agree to this investment to drive the sector forward in a fundamental way.”

Alan Tinger, LOCSU chairman said, “When I announced the reduction levy at the 2012 NOC it was the right decision at the right time, and now it is equally right to put it back to its original level to take the sector forward in this way.”

For more information and to download the full business case, click here.

To comment and ask questions about the revised strategy, email Chris McGachy, head of communications:cmcgachy@locsu.co.uk.


LOCSU’s managing director, Katrina Venerus will host a series of four webinars to give LOC chairs an opportunity to come together with members of the LOCSU board and LOCSU team for a Question & Answer session on the new strategy. For webinar dates and how to book follow this link to the Events page of the LOCSU website.