AOP update on new GOC e-service for statutory notices
The GOC intends to introduce email communication for statutory notices with consent
The Association of Optometrists (AOP) is aware that the General Optical Council (GOC) has informed registrants of its intention to serve statutory notices by email (e-service).
Statutory notices are issued as part of GOC registration and fitness to practise processes. This includes where a registrant is subject to a GOC fitness to practise matter, interim order proceedings, or if the GOC are seeking to remove a practitioner from the register, are refusing to retain them, or restore them to the register.
In the communication to registrants, the GOC notes that it is legally obliged to continue providing these notices in paper form unless it has consent from the registrant for e-service. In accordance with this, from 2024, members will be asked an additional question by the GOC when they register or renew their registration in order to obtain consent for e-service.
Scott Shadbolt, Head of Professional Discipline at the AOP, said: “We’re aware that this change has caused concern for some members, who are rightly worried that matters of such significance to their professional practice should not be treated lightly. The Professional Discipline team successfully challenged the GOC when they attempted to make this change previously without seeking consent. While we are pleased to see they have now altered their approach, we understand members may still have concerns.
We will therefore provide members with guidance at the earliest possible opportunity in the New Year so that they can make an informed decision about whether or not to consent to e-service.”
The GOC registration window will open in late January 2024.
For more information, please contact Serena Box, Head of Media, PR and External Affairs, at the Association of Optometrists, [email protected] or telephone 020 7549 2040.
Notes to Editors
Association of Optometrists
The Association of Optometrists (AOP) is the voice of the optical profession, representing over 80% of practising optometrists. The AOP elevates the work of its members, safeguards their interests, and champions eye health across the UK. For more information, visit www.aop.org.uk