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GOC registrants set for new year

19 Mar 2013

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The vast majority of General Optical Council (GOC) registrants have now renewed their GOC registration for 2013-14, demonstrating in the process that they have kept their clinical skills and knowledge up-to-date.

All optometrists and dispensing opticians had to meet the GOC’s 2010-12 Continuing Education and Training (CET) requirements before they were eligible to apply for retention.

By the 15 March deadline, 94.6 per cent of optometrists, dispensing opticians and optical businesses had applied, compared with 94.9 per cent last year and 93.8 per cent in 2011.

Philip Hallam, GOC Head of Registration, said: “These encouraging figures show that registrants understand the importance of completing CET and maintaining their GOC registration. The online system has again been a success, making applying for retention a quick and easy process.”

Registrants who missed the retention deadline, however, must now pay an extra £20 late application fee. If they have still not applied for retention by 31 March they will be removed from the Opticians Registers from 1 April. They will then be unable to practise in the UK or use a protected title such as optician, dispensing optician or optometrist.

Philip Hallam added, “For those registrants who missed the deadline, the situation is now serious. They already face an extra late application fee, but if they have not applied by 31 March they will be removed from our registers and unable to practise. I would urge anyone in this situation to take immediate action and apply for retention before the final deadline.”

The £260 retention fee was frozen this year – meaning that this is the third consecutive year in which GOC retention fees have been cut in real terms.

Registrants who failed to meet their CET points target by 15 March are now unable to make a late application, and will be removed from the registers from 1 April.


For further information please contact:
Simon Grier
Acting Communications Manager
General Optical Council
t: 020 7307 3478


1. The 2013-14 GOC registration year runs from 1 April 2013 to 31 March 2014.

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, conduct and performance amongst opticians. The Council currently registers around 26,000 optometrists, dispensing opticians, student opticians and optical businesses.

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