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News from 23 July Council

24 Jul 2014

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Illegal practice strategy


Council approved the GOC’s new strategy for tackling illegal practice in the optical sector.

The strategy covers all types of illegal practice prohibited by the Opticians Act 1989, from misrepresentation of title to online contact lens sales that do not comply with UK law.

The GOC will now take a proactive, multi-pronged approach to reducing public harm by raising awareness among contact lens wearers of the need to follow aftercare advice and have regular check-ups, promoting a code of practice for online contact lens suppliers, acting on complaints in line with its prosecution protocol and strengthening its collaboration with other bodies with a role in enforcement and promoting public health.

The strategy was subject to a public consultation from 3 March until 3 June. This included a public event on 12 May which brought together stakeholders including registrants, patient representatives, professional bodies, manufacturers and retailers to discuss the GOC’s proposed approach.


Equality and diversity scheme

Council also approved the GOC’s new Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Scheme.

The scheme includes proposals to ensure fair access to GOC services; to ensure that all staff, registrants, Council and committee members are adequately trained and informed of their duties in respect of equality, diversity and inclusion; and to gather more data to better understand the makeup of the optical professions.

The scheme had also been subject to a full public consultation, running from 24 February to 19 May.


Mandie Lavin appointed chief executive of CILEx

Samantha Peters, GOC Chief Executive and Registrar, announced that Mandie Lavin, GOC Director of Regulation, has been appointed as Chief Executive of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx).

Mandie will take up her position on 1 January 2015, until when she will remain in post at the GOC. The GOC will announce plans to appoint her successor later in the summer.

Samantha Peters said: “We’re sad to see Mandie leave but on a personal level I’m delighted to see her appointed to this well-deserved new role.

“It reflects extremely well on her work in nearly three years at the GOC, during which time she has been a valuable and highly influential colleague.

“Her achievements include introducing our new Fitness to Practise Rules, overseeing the implementation of our new enhanced CET Scheme and for two consecutive years seeing us meet all 24 of the Professional Standards Authority’s Standards of Good Regulation.

“I’d like to thank Mandie for her help and support in her time here and I wish her the very best for the future.”


Other news

GOC Chair Gareth Hadley announced that the GOC will publicly launch its standards review on 31 July by publishing a call for evidence. This will be an open consultation seeking stakeholders’ initial views on the project. The GOC will publish further information next week when the review launches.

Council considered the GOC’s performance review report from the Professional Standards Authority (the Authority), the body which oversees its work. The GOC met all 24 of the Authority’s Standards of Good Regulation; more information about this is available at http://www.optical.org/en/news_publications/news_item.cfm/goc-recognised-as-meeting-all-the-standards-of-good-regulation2014

Council also approved an anti-bribery, theft, fraud, money laundering and corruption policy and a statement of intent about sustainability.

Next meeting – Wednesday 12 November 2014 in London. Time and venue to be confirmed at a later date.

ENDS

Sent to: «Email»


For media enquiries please contact:
Simon Grier
Communications Manager
General Optical Council
t: 020 7307 3478
e: sgrier@optical.org

Notes to editors

1. Papers for all of the items mentioned above can be viewed on our website: http://www.optical.org/en/get-involved/Council_meetings_and_papers/council-papers-for-july-2014.cfm

 

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

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