OFNC working with NHS England on plan to restart optical services

Arrangements are being made for optometrists to “provide more face-to-face care as soon as possible” after announcement that dentists will reopen on 8 June

Pixabay/Joseph Shohmelian
Arrangements for optical practices to provide more face-to-face care are being developed “urgently” by the Optometric Fees Negotiating Committee (OFNC) and NHS England following the announcement that dental services will resume on 8 June.

The OFNC released a statement highlighting that, as with dentistry, the need for infection control and social distancing will reduce the number of patients that practices can safely see.

The reopening of dental services is subject to practices having the necessary infection control and personal protective equipment in place.

The statement highlighted: “The OFNC notes that the current temporary financial arrangements for dentistry are to be maintained initially and is similarly discussing with NHS England how the financial impact on optical practices of the necessary changes in the way care is delivered can be mitigated.”

While no details are available yet about when a broader re-opening of optical services may occur, the OFNC has urged practices to prepare for a “wider resumption of face-to-face care in the near future.”

A statement outlining the expanded scope of essential care with the easing of lockdown measures across the UK was released by the OFNC on Wednesday (27 May).