The College of Optometrists has accredited the University of Bradford as a provider of a professional higher certificate in glaucoma.
Starting in September, the course will prepare optometrists to diagnose ocular hypertension, make a preliminary diagnosis of chronic open angle glaucoma, and to monitor patients who are being treated for ocular hypertension, or in the absence of a management plan.
It consists of practical workshops, nine online learning units and a clinical placement in a hospital glaucoma clinic.
Lecturer in optometry at the University of Bradford, Dr Jonathan Denniss, said: “Management of ocular hypertension and glaucoma is particularly important for the ocular health of our ageing population.”
“This type of training enables optometrists to play an increasing role in managing these patients both in the community and in hospitals. This course will improve patient outcomes and enable optometrists to relieve some of the burden of ocular hypertension management from NHS hospitals,” he added.
The professional higher certificate in glaucoma is part of a collection of courses developed by the College of Optometrists to enable optometrists to provide extended services in key areas such as contact lens practice, paediatrics, low vision and medical retina.
Director of education at the College of Optometrists, Jackie Martin, said: “The College’s higher qualifications in glaucoma are proving very popular, this is the eleventh to become available across the UK. They are so important because they demonstrate to other healthcare professionals the training that optometrists have undertaken as well as equipping them with the skills required to deliver community services.”