Freeze on GOS fees for third year running

The NHS sight test fee will remain unchanged, although there will be a slight (1%) increase in CET fees and grants for pre-registration optometrists


A freeze on General Ophthalmic Services (GOS) fees for the third consecutive year has been labelled by the chair of the Optometric Fees Negotiating Committee (OFNC) as “a real blow.”

The fee paid to optometrists for a sight test will remain at the 2015–2016 level of £21.31 for 2018–2019. NHS optical voucher values will also remain at the same level over the coming year.

CET fees and grants for pre-registration optometrists see a small increase of 1%.

OFNC chair, Trevor Warburton, described the fee freeze as “completely unacceptable and a real blow.”

“The profession and GOS providers will be bitterly disappointed, especially when seen against more positive settlements being announced elsewhere and the powerful arguments made by OFNC in support of an increase, including the additional cost burdens on providers,” he emphasised.

“The costs of operating community optical practices have increased every bit as much as for other primary care contractors,” Mr Warburton added. 

Image credit: Bank of England