In a move that will make the professional certificate in medical retina more appealing to a wide range of optometrists, the College of Optometrists and Public Health England have aligned the College-accredited certificate with the new level three diploma for health screeners (diabetic eye).
This development will allow optometrists who study for the updated professional certificate in medical retina to cover all of the requirements for the level three diploma for health screeners (diabetic eye), with the exception of the diabetic retinopathy imaging unit, without carrying out the majority of the NHS England diabetic eye screening programme, training (DESP).
Director of education at the College of Optometrists, Jackie Martin, told OT: “This is a great development for those who complete the professional certificate in medical retina. Optometrists with our revised qualification will be automatically exempt from the majority of the NHS England DESP training.
“It means that if you have the revised College-accredited qualification, and you are working where optometry-based diabetic retinopathy screening programmes are commissioned, you could be part of the local service pathway with a qualification specifically aimed at optometrists.”
She continued: “We’re expecting that this alignment will make the professional certificate more attractive to a range of optometrists; those practising in areas where DESP schemes are commissioned, optometrists and hospital optometrists looking to get involved with secondary and arbitration grading, and optometrists who have an interest in medical retina and diabetic retinal imaging.”