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Aston becomes first independent prescribing qualification centre

Aston becomes first independent prescribing qualification centre

GOC notes Aston as first independent prescribing qualification to meet new education and training requirements

The General Optical Council (GOC) has noted Aston University’s Independent Prescribing for Optometrists qualification as the first independent prescribing (IP) post-graduate qualification to be delivered under the GOC’s new education and training requirements (ETR).

Aston will deliver the updated qualification to the first cohort of students from October 2023.

Providers of existing GOC-approved qualifications are required to submit detailed plans of how their adapted qualifications will meet the new education and training requirements, with the GOC reviewing and noting these changes.

The updated qualification will still be subject to the GOC’s routine quality assurance processes to ensure they satisfy the GOC’s requirements.

Samara Morgan, GOC Head of Education Development, said: “We are pleased to note Aston as the first independent prescribing qualification to meet the new education and training requirements. We have seen great progress from providers adapting to the new requirements across optometry, dispensing optics, and independent prescribing. There are still more qualifications due to adapt and we continue to work closely with each provider to ensure our expectations are clear, and that the updated qualifications are satisfactory to adequately prepare students to meet the needs of patients in the future.”

Dr Preeti Bhogal-Bhamra, Director of Optometry Postgraduate Taught Programmes at Aston, commented: “The Aston IP team are excited to be offering the new structure for IP qualification and are looking forward to supporting Optometrists gain IP status, this will be a great step forward for the profession as a whole.”

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