Specsavers introduces new clinical technician role to the group

The training can be accessed by optical assistants and is designed to be a role that supports optometrists

optical equipment

Specsavers has announced the launch of a new role across the group that aims to support optometrists to improve patient care and clinical efficiency.

The High Street multiple’s clinical technician position enables optical assistants to upskill through a 16-week long internal training programme that teaches them to perform diagnostic information gathering and pre-assessment procedures, when working under the supervision of an optometrist.

Grant Duncan, director of professional development at Specsavers
Specsavers highlighted that the new role “enables tasks to be safely delegated to the clinical technician as a trained member of the team, in line with the General Optical Council’s requirement that tasks are only delegated to those with the ‘knowledge or skills to perform the delegated activity’.”

Optical assistants who have six months experience are able to sign up to the programme, as can those who are Cert 3/Cert 3 contact lens qualified.

Speaking about the introduction of the clinical technician route, Grant Duncan, director of professional development at Specsavers, said: “Additional support from a colleague trained to talk to patients, explain the purpose of diagnostic tests and gain consent has been welcomed by our optometrists.”

Duncan explained that clinician technicians will have “skills relating to non-contact tonometry, keratometry and autorefraction. Plus, they are trained to use the latest digital imaging technology and can perform optical coherence tomography scan capture. Visual field testing following the optometrist’s instructions, always working within the oversight of the supervising clinician, is another area that can be undertaken by them.”

Duncan said that those who complete the clinical technician programme will also have “an enhanced understanding of the importance of diagnostic and pre-assessment tests and increased competence in their delivery.”