Your voice in the media

Our key campaigns and media coverage highlights

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Through our national and regional media campaigns, we aim to ensure that the voice of our members is heard on important issues impacting the profession.

Set up in 2017, our annual Voice of Optometry insight survey which invites members to share their experiences, has been instrumental in helping us to do this. Using our Voice of Optometry findings we’ve launched public awareness campaigns on a range of topics including driving and vision, children's eye health and lifestyle choices.

Media coverage highlights 2023

We had a successful year in raising the profile of eye health on the national news agenda in 2023 with our campaigns featuring across national, regional, online and sector media outlets. 

Our Sight won’t wait campaign on the NHS eye care backlog achieved substantial coverage in both waves of media activity carried out in March and November, with over 200 pieces of coverage including BBC Breakfast, ITV, The Guardian, The TelegraphThe Independent, Express and The Standard.

Our long running Don’t swerve a sight test campaign consistently gained media attention throughout the year. Our response to the DVLA on the revised notifiable conditions list was the most high-performing activity, securing more than 400 pieces of coverage across regional and national media including the Express, the Mirror and The Independent.

Sight for SEN, our campaign promoting the value of the Special Schools Eye Care Service was also positively received by sector press and ministers. Our political lobbying drive alongside The Eyes Have It partners which calls for national commissioning of eye care services was covered in a report on BBC Radio 4 In Touch, featuring AOP Councillor, Josie Evans. 

We increased our media activity across the four nations in areas such as the Welsh NHS contract reforms, access to eye care for universal credit claimants in Northern Ireland and the NHS waiting list backlog, offering expert spokesperson interviews for BBC Radio Scotland, BBC Wales, BBC Radio Ulster and BBC Radio Foyle.

Further 2023 highlights

Media coverage highlights 2022

We secured national coverage across three headline campaigns alongside an ongoing programme of media activity to promote optometry and eye health.

2022 saw regular appearances on Radio 4’s In Touch programme including discussing the impact of COVID-19 on eye health and the future of cornea transplantation, according to pioneering research.

We launched our first long-running campaign for equality, diversity and inclusion in optics, 100% Respect. Our cost of living activity #EyeCareSupportNow supported by MP Marsha de Cordova, secured over 200 pieces of coverage across broadcast, print and online publications with key targets BBC, Channel 4 and the The Independent covering our findings.

Our Don’t swerve a sight test campaign also continued to perform well with the latest data and case examples gaining traction with national outlets such as the Express, Sun and Daily Star.

Further 2022 highlights


Media coverage highlights 2021

The shift seen across the media landscape in 2020 continued throughout 2021 – but that didn’t stop us supporting members with crucial COVID-19 related news and campaigns around topical subjects throughout the year.

We secured national coverage in the Telegraph discussing how lockdown has impacted the UK’s eye health, coverage from a range of UK news outlets surrounding the new DVLA proposals for drivers over 70, as well as eye care tips in lifestyle publications like My Weekly, Platinum Magazine and more.

Our summer consumer campaign SPF for your Eyes secured coverage across national and regional outlets including the Express and Sun. While additional activity included launching our Know your lenses campaign, around the illegal supply of contact lenses online, and winter driving tips as part of our annual Don’t swerve a sight test campaign.

Further 2021 highlights


Media coverage highlights 2020

The media landscape shifted dramatically in 2020 – curtailing much planned PR activity for the year. Despite that, we supported members with as many as three releases a week on coronavirus-related issues at the height of the pandemic and continued to achieve high profile coverage throughout including calling on the Government for more financial and job support schemes, illegal practice, contact lens advice and returning to practice. Our campaigns included spectacle anti-fogging tips covered by the Daily Mail, The Sun and online portals such as Yahoo!, and our driving in the dark campaign, coinciding with the clocks changing, was picked up by lifestyle publications My Weekly, The People's Friend and regional press.

Further 2020 highlights