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GOC calls for 'final push' on CET

7 Dec 2006

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General Optical Council press release, 8 December 2006

For immediate release

GOC calls for ‘final push’ on CET

The General Optical Council (GOC) has called on practitioners to make a ‘final push’ to meet the deadline to earn and confirm Continuing Education and Training (CET) points by 31 December 2006.

Over 85% of optometrists and 77% of dispensing opticians have already achieved their points requirement. 71% of contact lens opticians have also achieved the target.

“The response to the CET scheme from the professions has been impressive,” said registrar Peter Coe. “The vast majority have met or exceeded the requirement without any difficulty. We are very close to meeting the target so it would be great to see a final push from practitioners to get their points before the deadline.”

With just three weeks left until 31 December, 2928 registrants have not ‘earned and confirmed’ the minimum number of points required. This figure includes some practitioners who will not continue their registration from 1 April 2007. Around 500 have not registered on the www.cetoptics.com website. However, nearly 600 have sufficient pending points to meet the requirement, but will be deemed to have a shortfall unless they confirm points by the end of the year.

Completed CET can be confirmed on the www.cetoptics.com website. Everyone who ‘earns and confirms’ the minimum number of points receives an email confirmation from CET administrator Vantage Technologies. Vantage will automatically notify the GOC of everyone who has met the minimum points requirement by 31 December 2006.

“Registrants need to remember to confirm their points, or they won’t be counted,” added Peter Coe. “If you’ve confirmed the minimum number of points, you don’t need to do anything else. Just complete your retention form as usual and return it with your payment before 15 March.”

Anyone who fails to meet the minimum CET requirement by 31 December 2006 will be deemed to be in shortfall. Registrants with a shortfall will receive formal notification from the Registrar in January. Registrants will need to make up the shortfall by 15 March 2007.

Peter Coe explained: “There is no extension of the deadline. The rules are the same as they have always been since they came into force on 1 July 2005. They do allow for a practitioner to make up a shortfall by 15 March. But clearly that is a far from ideal position for any registrant to be in.”

ENDS

For further information please contact:
Kate Fielding
Communications Manager
General Optical Council
t: 020 7307 3472
e: kfielding@optical.org

Notes for editors:
From 1 July 2005, Continuing Education and Training (CET) became a statutory requirement for continued registration. The CET scheme exists to ensure registrants maintain the up-to-date knowledge and skills they need to practise safely throughout their career.

Registrants are required to complete 36 general CET points plus 18 specialist points where relevant over a three year cycle. The requirement is pro-rata for anyone joining the register part way through a cycle.

About the General Optical Council:
The GOC is the regulator for the optical professions in the UK. Its purpose is to protect the public by promoting high standards of education and conduct amongst opticians. The Council currently registers around 22,000 optometrists, dispensing opticians, student opticians and optical businesses.

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