EDITORIAL 020 7501 6745 Editor-in-chief Chris Bennett 020 7501 6660 chris.bennett@markallengroup.com Editor Simon Jones 020 7501 6667 simon.jones@markallengroup.com Deputy editor Mike Hale 020 7501 6670 mike.hale@markallengroup.com Clinical editor Bill Harvey 07766 508458 bill.harvey@markallengroup.com Content editor Andrew McClean 020 7501 6788 andrew.mcclean@markallengroup.com Online editor Lucy Patchett 020 7501 6663 lucy.patchett@markallengroup.com Production editor Gary O’Connell 020 7501 6706 gary.o’connell@markallengroup.com Art editor Sara Challinor 020 7501 6666 sara.challinor@markallengroup.com ADVERTISING & SPONSORSHIP Sales director Darren Ward 020 7501 6668 darren.ward@markallengroup.com Key account manager Joseph Lever 020 7501 6708 joseph.lever@markallengroup.com RECRUITMENT & CLASSIFIED Recruitment solutions manager Daniel Doherty 020 7501 6686 daniel.doherty@markallengroup.com Managing director Anthony Kerr 020 7501 6726 anthony.kerr@markallengroup.com Group production manager Kyri Apostolou 020 7501 6779 kyri.apostolou@markallengroup.com Production director Richard Hamshere Chief executive officer Ben Allen Chairman Mark Allen EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD Will Ayliffe PhD FRCS FRCOphth DO; Sally Bates FBDO; Dr Frank Eperjesi PhD BSc MCOptom FAAO; Professor Bernard Gilmartin PhD FCOptom FAAO; Graham Hutchison MBA; Professor Mo Jalie SMSA FBDO FCGI MIMgt; Dr Lyndon Jones PhD FCOptom DCLP DOrth FAAO; Geoff Roberson BSc FCOptom; Dr Steve Taylor PhD MSc FCOptom; Graeme Young MPhil FCOptom DCLP FAAO SUBSCRIPTIONS 0800 137201 Subscribe or renew 01722 716997 subscriptions@markallengroup.com BACK ISSUES 01722 716997 REPRINTS 020 7501 6790 ISSN 0030.3968

Part of


Optician is published every Friday © 2022 MA Healthcare Ltd St Judes Church, Dulwich Road, London SE24 0PB. Telephone 020 7738 5454 Website: www.opticianonline.net ISSN 0030.3968 Printed in Britain by Pensord Press, Tram Road, Pontllanfraith, Gwent, NP12 2YA Please read our privacy policy at privacypolicy.markallengroup.com. This will explain how we process, use and safeguard your data



To read the full stories and keep up to date on the latest news and views visit opticianonline.net

Whistle blown on clinical failures

Perth-based optometrist Mary Docherty has been suspended for 12 months by a General Optical Council fitness to practise committee after a panel heard she failed to conduct essential ocular examinations and did not keep accurate records over a period of six years.

Docherty was reported to the NHS by a whistle-blower who was concerned about the care of nine patients. The General Ophthalmic Services Performance Review Group (PRG) investigated the records and found concerns in eight out the nine cases. A wider PRG review of 60 patient records found ‘multiple incidents of inadequate patient management, some potentially resulting in long term harm.’

In July 2020, Docherty informed the GOC that she had taken up a

new career as a celebrant and was no longer working as an optometrist. She agreed not to apply for registration in the future.

Eye care delays outlined at Holyrood An optical campaign group told Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSP) that over 29,000 patients have experienced waiting times of more than 16 weeks to receive specialist NHS ophthalmology treatment.

During a reception at Holyrood on June 1, The Eyes Have It (TEHI) partnership and Sight Scotland said NHS figures showed these patients made up over 50% of the entire ophthalmology waiting list.

Ophthalmology was the third busiest outpatient specialty in the Scottish NHS and accounted for 10% of new outpatient appointments in Scotland, the


Pick of the posts

A lack of evidence Optician published an article (7 Days, 03.06.22) by Neil Retallic, president of the BCLA, on the paper entitled ‘All soft contact lenses are not created equal’. The thrust of this paper was that, as a consequence of this inequality, contact lenses should ‘never be substituted for another lens type in the absence of a new prescription.’

However, the report authors state that ‘the present authors are unaware of any direct evidence in the literature demonstrating adverse ocular effects or other unwanted consequences of contact lens substitution.’

To underline this lack of evidence, eye care professionals will be aware that the matter of ‘substitution’ was examined in great detail by the GOC, which recorded in an ICO report from November 7, 2017 (FOI report FS50689175) that there was no evidence to suggest any risk with brand substitution. This, they added, was communicated online to the public via the GOC’s website. ‘No evidence’ surely means ‘no evidence’. Ronald S Hamilton, executive chair, Daysoft

Craig Spalding

group outlined.

Craig Spalding, CEO of Sight Scotland, said: ‘The situation has worsened due to the Covid-19 pandemic, which led to a dramatic fall in outpatient activity, but there is now an opportunity to improve efficiency, effectiveness and patient experience as the healthcare system looks towards Covid-19 recovery. Reducing waiting lists must be a key priority.’

College adviser awarded an MBE Optometrist and clinical adviser at the College of Optometrists, Daniel Hardiman-McCartney, has been awarded an MBE for services to optometry in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List, which was announced as part of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

Colin Davidson, optometrist and president of the College of Optometrists, said: ‘It’s wonderful to see the work of our profession celebrated. Not only does the award represent outstanding personal achievement, but it also reflects growing recognition, by decision-makers and the public, of the vital contribution to public health that all optometrists and

Daniel Hardiman-McCartney

4 OPTICIAN 10 June 2022