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I could not live without...

The Specsavers Professional Network on Yammer

Pre-reg optometrist at Specsavers in Driffield, Mariam Tall, shares insight into how she uses the digital tool in practice and the benefits it brings

15 Oct 2019 by Mariam Tall

The Specsavers Professional Network on Yammer is a platform that allows all Specsavers employed optometrists across the UK and Ireland to share interesting clinical cases and take part in discussions regarding the management of particular patients.

The platform is quick and easy to use and there are a range of different groups that optometrists can post in depending on what they want to share. For example, there is an optical coherence tomography (OCT) group, in which clinicians can post details of OCT cases that they have encountered, including confidential scans and photographs. There is also a group for clinical talk where any cases not featuring OCT can be posted.

“It’s allowing me to be clinically confident of the decisions I have been making in practice regarding the patients I see”

Talking to my pre-reg peers

One particular group on the platform that is most targeted towards me and the stage that I am and in my career is the pre-reg group, which has been a great help to me throughout my pre-reg year. It’s a secure network so I feel that I can ask anything, and always receive really positive helpful replies.

I find it really useful to be able to share cases and receive feedback and information from my peers who are also members of the network. I also read through the posts that other people have contributed and find myself learning about lots of different things.

My pre-reg supervisor encouraged me to use and post on the network platform fairly early on after it launched. At the time there was a competition to win a Superfield lens and I was one of the lucky ones to win.

During my pre-reg year I have tended to use and post on the network I when I have time in my clinic between patients. If I am busy, I make a note of thoughts that I’d like to share so that I can post them at a later time. I don’t necessarily post all the time. However, I do tend to read through to see some of the interesting cases that other optometrists have come across in practice.

I find the Specsavers Professional Network on Yammer really useful for receiving additional feedback on my management of patients, especially as I have been using the network as a pre-reg optometrist. It’s allowing me to be clinically confident of the decisions I have been making in practice regarding the patients I see.

It is a great tool to pose questions regarding patients on. The posts reach a large number of optometrists, so you gain many more opinions than you would only discussing with your colleagues instore. It’s also a way to learn from others, which I think is very positive. Even if you don’t post it’s good to read up on some of the cases that other optometrists have posted.

“I cannot live without the Specsavers Professional Network on Yammer because it is an opportunity to learn and develop – I have already learnt so much from it”

In use

I would encourage all clinicians, both pre-regs and qualified optometrists, who have access to this network to use it. It is not very time consuming, yet provides you with an opportunity to ask questions to your peers regarding patients. It is also a way of learning from others, which I think is very positive. Even if you don’t post, it is good to read some of the cases other optometrists have posted.

I cannot live without the Specsavers Professional Network on Yammer because it is an opportunity to learn and develop – I have already learnt so much from it. I also like the fact that I can share cases that I’ve come across, highlighting the benefit of the OCT in store for my colleagues to learn from too.

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