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Guidance on consent and the duty of candour

Closing date: 6 September 2016

We are currently consulting on draft guidance on our standards relating to obtaining valid consent and meeting the duty of candour.

The standards in these two areas came into force in April 2016. The draft guidance has been developed to assist registrants in meeting these new standards.

We are now seeking stakeholder views on the draft guidance with a view to publishing the final versions by the end of 2016.

Marcus Dye, GOC Head of Education and Standards said, “It was clear from our standards consultation last year that registrants would like more guidance to help them apply the standards relating to the duty of candour and obtaining valid consent in practice. Candour is a relatively new concept in healthcare and there is a professional responsibility to be open and transparent with patients when things go wrong. It is also important for registrants to obtain valid consent before examining a patient or providing treatment.

“This guidance helps to make clearer what the Standards mean in practice and to support our registrants in applying them. We have run CET events at recent major trade shows, but we want to make sure that clear, written guidance is available to all in these areas. I urge all registrants and stakeholders to read the draft guidance and let us know their views.”

To view the proposed draft guidance:

Acrobat Reader icon GOC consultation on consent guidance

Acrobat Reader icon GOC consultation on duty of candour guidance


To respond to this consultation, please complete the forms below:

Response form for consent consultation

Response form for duty of candour consultation


Alternatively, responses can be sent either by email to by 6 September 2016, or by post to:

Angharad Jones
General Optical Council
10 Old Bailey

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We take our consultation process seriously and believe it is important that the people affected by our work have a say in how we operate. Our consultation process is laid out in the GOC Consultation Framework. Details of our current consultations are below; please get involved and help us in our work protecting the public.


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