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National Museum of Wales Cardiff , 28th and 29th June 2017 February brings the start of the Six nations rugby tournament. It seems apt to announce the BIOS annual scientific conference which will take place in Cardiff at the National Museum of Wales, between 28th and 29th June 2017. This excellent conference will include; the inaugural Gail Stephenson Memorial Lecture delivered by Dr David Newsham, Head of Orthoptics, at Liverpool University. A short paper session, chaired by Dr Anna Horwood, Research Director for BIOS and presentations from all the BIOS special interest groups. A fantastic drinks reception will be held in the Impressionists Gallery. This is included in the price for member delegates. Please register via the BIOS website. Disability access is available to the lecture theatre.



IN THIS EDITION Cardiff conference News from across the UK • Orthoptists share their eye care expertise during visit by Health Secretary • Report on the Eastern Region Orthoptic InService Study Day • Bayer Ophthalmology Awards 2016 • University of Sheffield MMed Sci Graduation Training • Retinoscopy courses Trustee, BIOS Leads and reports Other news • Orthoptic Benevolent fund • All Wales Orthoptic Advisory Committee (AWOAC) Report • News from other organisations AHPsintoaction Events for your diary Who’s Who




CARDIFF CONFERENCE 2017 WE ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO A WONDERFUL CONFERENCE IN WALES. THE FOLLOWING GUIDES HAVE BEEN PRODUCED TO HELP YOU SUBMIT YOUR POSTER OR ABSTRACT FOR THE CONFERENCE: Preparing your Poster Read the guidance • Landscape / portrait? Size will be determined by the conference venue’s poster boards and some are quite odd, so the usual A0 or A1 size won’t fit. Set up your Powerpoint page accordingly. • Many trusts and universities have branded formats that you can use and may have spent a lot of money on good design – so don’t re-invent the wheel unnecessarily. Some are very fussy about not changing any branding details e.g. moving/ changing top banners. • Digital posters may let you have up to 3 slides, but may be on smaller screens, so watch font sizes. Make sure your font is legible from the distance from which it will be read. • Some conferences specify a minimum font size. Bigger is better.


Catch the reader’s attention • Imagine you are the reader – what would make you keep reading past the title if you were wandering casually round 50 posters at coffee time? • Most people only read the title and conclusions and look at the pictures anyway, so make sure they are good. • Clear, eye-catching, high contrast, but easy on the eye. Very bright colours against a dark or contrasting background may be difficult to read. Try to stick to an overall design – not “bitty”. • Clear title. Visible from a distance. Authors and contact details (email addresses). • A two / three column format is easier to read. • Bullet points drive home important points. • Stick to any abstract headings if possible. • Clear headings, text boxes, colour helps draw the eye to the next section. • Stick to a few specific font sizes e.g. 28pt for the text and 54pt for titles. Two “nearly the same” size fonts e.g. 26pt and 28pt together, look messy. • Beware of justifying very narrow columns (although justified text looks neater). • Nobody reads solid blocks of text. Use white spaces to divide the poster. • A good diagram/chart is worth many words – but make it clear what it is saying. Legends /titles must also be legible from a distance. Don’t forget error bars, statistic values.


KEYNOTE REPORT • If you use a picture as an overall background, make sure that it is low contrast and that all the text is still clearly visible. • Actual methods, results, statistics must still be there for the expert reader to scrutinise. • You do need a proper (but brief) reference section (no more than 10 – preferably less – and it can be in smaller font). • If you have funding, hospital or university affiliations, use their latest logos / layouts. Put grant numbers / acknowledgements on the poster. • Some people like to collect copies to read later, so consider photocopying some handouts and pinning a folder to the poster board. • A really good discipline (even if there is no formal attended poster session) is to “talk someone through” your poster – it helps you prioritise things.

Preparing Your Conference Abstract Read the Guidance • Most conferences use structured abstracts with specific headings. • Stick to the word limit exactly because most abstracts are submitted online and the websites delete any extra words. • You may have to submit the abstract while final data collection or analysis are still incomplete, but some actual results must be presented; it is not acceptable to say “results will be presented”. If final data collection is still in progress, you must produce sufficiently robust results in the abstract to stand alone and justify acceptance. • Conference presentations usually precede a journal submission, so numbers in a conference abstract may be slightly different from a final accepted paper, but the abstracts are often available online and published conference proceedings are a publication. It is risky to submit very early data. What if your final results and conclusions are different and you have already submitted the abstract?

Authors /Affiliations (if not an anonymous Key Words (not always required).

Introduction /rationale • What is the topic / problem / reason for the study? Why is it novel?

Method • Methodology e.g. audit; survey; RCT; qualitative; prospective/retrospective; sampling method • Selection criteria. Participants defined. Equipment. Intervention / treatment • How were the data analysed? More detailed description of any novel analysis method.

Results • Numbers tested (and excluded if appropriate). Main results and findings. • Statistical significance (p-values must be stated, although t, χ2 and F values and degrees of freedom can be excluded if lengthy). • Remember to say the direction of significance (i.e. significantly more/less rather than just “significantly different”). • Notable complications, unexpected findings

Conclusions / significance/ impact of the findings

Title • May be word-limited


• Many online literature searches use titles and key words, so make sure you choose words that will help people find your work (all the above may not figure in the word count)

• The “take home message” – but it must be backed up by the data, not just your opinion. If your work has just shown more work needs to be done, say what it should be. • References are not required in an abstract




ORTHOPTISTS SHARE THEIR EYE CARE EXPERTISE DURING VISIT BY HEALTH SECRETARY Health Secretary Vaughan Gething has been given a close-up look at how eye health care is developing for Welsh patients. On a visit to the orthoptic clinic at Princess of Wales Hospital in Bridgend he met staff who explained the range of services and treatments they can offer to help patients living in ABMU Health Board area.

During his tour Mr Gething talked to Suzanne Martin, the first orthoptist in Wales qualified to give injections directly into the eye to treat conditions such as wet age-related macular degeneration and diabetic macular oedema.

Mr Gething was greeted by Karen Phillips, head of ABMU’s orthoptic services, which currently account for a third of the orthoptic workforce in Wales including the only five advanced orthoptic practitioners in the principality.

Orthoptist Caroline Bodycombe, who leads the service at Neath Port Talbot Hospital, explains an eye test she uses with stroke patients to Vaughan Gething. He also met staff who specialise in dealing with conditions such as glaucoma, patients who have had strokes or have learning difficulties and children with visual problems affecting their reading.


Health Secretary Vaughan Gething with (from left) Caroline Bodycombe, Alan Ashcroft, Suzanne Martin, Karen Phillips and Judith Downs during his visit to the Princess of Wales Hospital.

The team members, who see patients at Princess of Wales, Singleton and Neath Port Talbot hospitals, shared their vision for how their diagnostic techniques and clinical interpretation skills can be put to wider use in the future.

She explained how staff across the profession are now developing their skills to expand the role of orthoptists and what treatments they can deliver to patients. Karen said: “We were pleased to welcome Mr Gething to Bridgend Eye Unit to showcase orthoptic services on behalf of our colleagues across Wales.

After meeting the staff Mr Gething said: “I have been very impressed by what I have seen here today and learned about orthoptics. This is a good example of how different staff can do different things and how we are taking advantage of that variety of skills to help our patients.”

“As a small profession, we are relatively unknown and it’s been a great opportunity for us to demonstrate our input into Welsh eye care.”

Karen Phillips Head of ABMU’s orthoptic services




This was held at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Kings Lynn on Friday 25th November 2016. All Orthoptic Departments in the Eastern Region were invited and representatives from most departments attended. Mr. Michael Kouroupis, our medical retina consultant gave the first talk on conditions and treatments performed in his speciality. Then Mr. Steve Byard, gave an interactive talk about lid and facial lesions in Ophthalmology. He showed slides and chose audience members to answer his questions; this was an invaluable way of ensuring the audience kept thinking and enabled application of knowledge to our clinical practice. A delicious hot lunch was a time to chat with our colleagues and network. This was followed by Mr. Manzar Saeed’s surgical retinal talk, showing us videos of surgery and how it ties up sometimes with Orthoptic work. The next talk was by Mr. Baskar, who gave us an absolutely fascinating, historic and entertaining talk on the history of Ophthalmic practice and how some of the very early methods and treatments, found by experimentation, helped to evolve modern day 21st century Ophthalmology.

Mr. Peter Melling, Orthoptist, presented an unusual case of uniparental disomy of chromosome 22. Miss Dawn Revill, Orthoptist, presented her Primary School Screening audit. Mrs. Rosemary Russell presented 2 audits, one of an Orthoptic Patient Satisfaction Audit and our Screening Statistics from the last 17 years. I would like to thank all my staff and speakers for enabling this to be such a successful day. The next Regional meeting is to be held at Hinchingbrooke hospital in Huntingdon on Thursday 11th May. Mrs. Rosemary Russell Head Orthoptist




BAYER OPHTHALMOLOGY AWARDS 2016 I am the Specialist Orthoptist who works in the Stickler Syndrome Team at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge. It was a great surprise and honour for us to be nominated for ‘Best Team’ at the Bayer Ophthalmology Awards 2016. The Royal College of Surgeons in London hosted the evening. The evening was introduced by Dr Jackie Napier, Medical Director for Bayer. She explained that this is the second year that the awards have ran. The Ophthalmology awards were created to recognise and celebrate outstanding work being carried out by multidisciplinary teams around the UK. The best Ophthalmology team was Epsom and St Helier University for making a difference for glaucoma patients: A ‘can do’ approach. Manchester Royal Eye Hospital Retinopathy of prematurity Team were highly commended. We were commended for the Stickler Syndrome Service. We were wined and dined and it had left us all with a warm glow, not purely down to the wine! It’s rare to get good news these days about the NHS. Our department as a whole is still on a high from receiving a surprise ‘Judge’s Special Award’ for the Stickler service. Bradford 6

Ophthalmology research Network; Enhancing patient care through research also received this special award. There were winners and commendations in several other categories; Best patient support or education initiative, Best ophthalmology care innovation, Outstanding ophthalmology nurse or allied health professional and Ophthalmology unsung hero. So perhaps in 2017, you would like to nominate a colleague or a team within Ophthalmology that you would like to get recognised for their achievements and hard work. Please visit www.ophthalmologyhonours. for further details. Julie K Clarke



ORTHOPTIC BENEVOLENT FUND The charity was set up in 1960, founded in memory of Ella Graham Forsyth, a Scottish orthoptist, for the purposes of providing financial assistance in the training and further education of orthoptists, and relieving poverty in orthoptists, orthoptic students and their dependants. During its 56 years of existence the Benevolent Fund has helped both members of the profession and students, who have been given interest free loans and gifts of money to help them through financial and family crises. Every application is dealt with in complete confidence and every case is thoroughly investigated, not because the Trustees expect spurious claims but sometimes expert advice rather than money will better help solve a problem. Unfortunately the stories that circulate always relate to people who are said to have been denied help. One eminent member of our profession was widely said to have been refused assistance, but the truth was that the family solicitor had phoned to say that she was

far from destitute. The Trustees can’t publicly confirm or deny rumours as maintaining confidentiality is of paramount importance. However the Fund has been able to help both young and old members of the profession and students through traumatic personal events in their lives, where serious financial hardship has occurred through no fault of their own. Sadly the interest free loans don’t cover the purchase of new cars as one member hoped! Of course any offers of help with fundraising would be gratefully received. The Fund has limited resources so sadly we can’t do more than help out along with other agencies. However the Trustees comprising 3 ophthalmologists and 2 orthoptists with BIOS Chair and a representative from Scotland ex-officio, will always consider applications for help. Just email me: Carolyn Calcutt





MMEDSCI (VISION AND STRABISMUS) Congratulations to the Orthoptists who were among those receiving awards at the recent graduation ceremony! The next intake for the programme is September 2017 and there are still a few places remaining. If it’s been a while since you studied, be encouraged by this quote from Head Orthoptist Karon McCarthy: “In January this year I travelled to Sheffield for a graduation ceremony in which I proudly collected my MMedSci (Vision and strabismus) degree certificate. This was the culmination of three years of distance learning that I found to be hard work, but really enjoyable and rewarding. For anyone who perhaps hasn’t studied for a long time, but has an interest in gaining the MMedSci qualification, I would wholeheartedly encourage you to take the plunge and apply for the course. I’ve always been keen to keep my clinical knowledge up-todate through courses and conferences but had been out

of formal study for 25 years, so was a little nervous about making such a significant commitment. However, with the amazing support of staff on the course and from my fellow students, I not only managed to complete the degree but really enjoyed learning. It has significantly updated and increased my clinical knowledge, and given me greater confidence in my ability to lead my team. I highly recommend you take a look at the course and challenge yourself to take it on - It is never too late!” You might also be interested in one of our BIOS accredited standalone modules such as Low Vision or Stroke which are now running yearly! For more details please see: medicine/prospectivepg/taught/mmedsci/index Dr Charlotte Codina, Programme Leader

From left to right: Aishat Ateiza, Estelle Bishop, Karon McCarthy, Rachel Knight, Sophie Van Gemert and Ina Wittering. Also graduating but not pictured: Rachael Calvey, Alexandra Lindstrom, Daisy MacKeith, Jamie Spofforth, Louisa Haine and Nusrat Naseem. 8



RETINOSCOPY COURSES Between November 2016 and January 2017 106 orthoptists from 92 different departments attended the Non-Prescribing Retinoscopy courses I ran at Liverpool, Reading, Sheffield and Glasgow Caledonian Universities.

I wanted to run the courses because our research has led me to change the way I think about many orthoptic topics and I couldn’t imagine not being able to do retinoscopy. For many different reasons I use retinoscopy on probably 30% of all the patients I see and it helps me make better and appointment-saving decisions (and which are not about writing glasses prescriptions). I also join with the Education Committee and the universities in their concern that the retinoscopy skills which graduates have on qualification are often quickly lost due to disuse. The course was therefore designed to teach/update basic retinoscopy techniques, especially to more experienced orthoptists, while relating them to our research findings. This course was funded by the University of Reading Impact Development Fund to help strengthen our Impact Case Study in the next Research Excellence Framework (REF). These case studies are one way in which academic research is assessed and they target real-life changes which result from academic research. Our lab’s work is a good case study for the School of Psychology where I work because it reaches clinicians, and so patients, very quickly, compared with, say, drugs research or basic

science which can take decades, or may not reach the public at all. But although the impact on clinical practise is direct, proving it is very hard – it is not sufficient to say “people tell me they liked my conference talk”; the REF assessors want “how many people changed their behaviour?”, “how many appointments were saved?”, “how many departments did you reach?”, “how many people feel they understand some theory better?” So as part of the deal for a free course, participants had a series of feedback questionnaires to fill in so I can capture some of these data. The course was just a start for the orthoptists who attended. Retinoscopy isn’t difficult in itself, but it does take practice, so I hope everyone who attended is practicing every day – because the only way to get confident is to keep doing it until you realise that if you are struggling with a difficult pair of eyes, it is usually not your fault. Thank you so much to all the staff at the universities involved for providing help with room bookings, equipment, catering and general support. It enabled a lot of people to access free training, often reasonably local to home. For those who did not get a place this time, I hope I’ll be able to run some more courses soon. Anna Horwood

EXEMPTIONS UPDATE Legislation was changed in April 2016 to allow orthoptists who have completed a relevant training course to sell, supply and administer medicines under exemptions within Human Medicines Regulations 2012.

The National Prescribing Centre’s Single Competency framework for prescribers was updated in the summer. This has now been reviewed and relevant changes made to our practice guidance and outline curriculum framework.

The HCPC developed standards for the use of exemptions by orthoptists which were put to public consultation. The results of the consultation were collated and final standards were published in November 2016. HEIs are now able to apply to the HCPC for approval visits to provide training courses. The approval process is likely to take approximately 9 months.

A business case to support managers to access funding has been developed. We continue support both the paramedic and radiographer. Claire Saha, Exemptions SIG lead




REPUBLIC OF IRELAND (ROI) BIOS TRUSTEE REPORT Our objective for 2016 was to increase our involvement in SIGs and the development and promotion of Orthoptics in Ireland. I am delighted we now have Geraldine McBride (first from left in photo below) representing us on the PDC group. Farrah Loughrey on the Education group and Orna O’Halloran on the Glaucoma and retinal disease steering group. Orna is also now the clinical co-ordinator for the award winning diabetic retinopathy service in the Galway region (second from right in photo below). Alex Doherty is representing us on the vision screening SIG and is working on aligning our data collection so that we can input into future UK and Ireland screening audits.

recommendations for expansion of the orthoptic work force in Ireland. We look forward to the implantation of their plan in the coming years. In the interim our involvement with this group has led to the availability of funds from the HSE for waiting list initiatives.

We have continued our representation on the HSE primary eye care review group which this autumn tasked us with the development and delivery of an updated operating procedure for school vision screening. With the help of resources from the vision screening SIG we were able to roll out training nationwide so that all school nurses are now trained to use logmar acuity tests and their referral criteria has been standardised nationally.

We are currently reviewing our career structure and looking at posts that should be re-graded as clinical specialist or orthoptic manager.

Waiting lists continue to be a deep concern nationally. The national eye care review group is due to publish their findings soon which we expect will make


Myself and Geraldine McBride have been involved with the Health and Social Care Professions Association (HSCPA) which represents 12 professions. The group have been very strong in campaigning with the HSE for a HSCPA unit within the HSE and raising any potential concerns over CORU registration. Going forward we will use these avenues to promote extended roles for orthoptists.

We continue to support CPD and have arranged reflective practise workshops and secured funding for orthoptists to attend conferences such as BIPOSA . We have also secured funds for the buying of books and resource materials for departments. Midlands and East BIOS Trustee. Gillian O’Mullane, ROI Trustee



MIDLANDS AND EAST BIOS TRUSTEE After 25 years as an Orthoptist, I thought it was time to step up and take on a role within BIOS. I was daunted meeting some individuals, as the last time I’d seen them, they were examining me! There were no tweeds or pearls in sight! I have been overwhelmed by the support and camaraderie of my fellow Trustees and appointed BIOS Council members. They are really, really normal Orthoptists! I have been to several BIOS council meetings and started to understand most of the lingo! I’ve had one person say to me, well, you get to have a fancy lunch and my membership is paying for it! They seem to forget that their membership is also insuring them, funding exemptions and running a variety of courses. So far this year there have been oversubscribed retinoscopy courses across the UK. I’ve been amazed how much time is taken up with BIOS matters. I have a very minor role, compared to others but I am often typing into the wee hours at home. I don’t know where Rowena, Veronica, Lesley-Anne, Alison and others find the time to fit it all in! Thank you for all your hard work. I had the pleasure of hosting the BIOS AGM in Cambridge (Sept 16) and organising the Midlands and East Clinical Meeting (Nov 16). Unfortunately, Porchester personnel and myself were ill, so we missed meeting BIOS members. I was sorry not to see everyone, especially those who travelled from the Midlands to join us.

The last few months I’ve been helping to compile PV. It’s been an interesting process. I would urge everyone to contact Lesley-Anne Baxter, Anna Horwood or myself, if they have anything they would like to contribute to PV. It’s your newsletter, so please get involved. We really don’t bite! I’d also like to thank a few members who have contacted me about their BIOS membership. I had the pleasure of meeting Mohima and Zaheer from Porchester in November. I was so impressed by their enthusiasm and energy. They so wish to do their utmost to bring PV, website and BIOS as a whole forward and develop the awareness of the profession. They have inherited some admin nightmares. Instead of moaning about it, they have stepped up to the challenge. I appreciate your patience as they resolve some ongoing admin issues. If I can be of any assistance to any BIOS members, please feel free to get in touch. The UK has been broken down into workable regions. However, I am aware that some Southern BIOS region members are probably closer to me in Cambridge than some of the Midland based Orthoptists. We are very happy for any region to join us for any future training. Julie K Clarke

NORTHERN BIOS TRUSTEE REPORT Since taking up my role as role as BIOS Trustee for the Northern Region last summer I am gradually becoming acquainted with all things BIOS.

My main activity so far has been attending various BIOS meetings to represent



BRANCH REPORTS the Northern region. In September I attended my first Trustee meeting and AGM in Cambridge and then in November my first BIOS council meeting in London. Attendance alone is obviously not the only time commitment and I am always thankful to be blessed with long journeys from the North East which allow me to get all of my pre-meeting homework done! Closer to home in November we held our Northern Region Clinical meeting in Newcastle. This was a well attended positive day with excellent presentations, all of which were delivered by Orthoptists. In true Northern style there was some excellent discussion (full write-up

will be in a future edition of PV). Work is now underway to finalise arrangements for the next meeting in Wakefield in the spring and the programme is looking like another good one. With the learning curve of the first six months as a Trustee done my main priority now is to get to know members in the Northern Region a bit more, to allow me to be able to fully represent your views. In the meantime, I would encourage members to contact me if there is anything you would like me to raise on your behalf Kathryn Smart

SOUTHERN BIOS TRUSTEE REPORT Activities in the Southern Region: Meetings Annual Paediatric & Strabismus Study Day Whipps Cross South West In–Service Day Bristol South Central In-Service Day Basingstoke South West Clinical Day Barnstable South East Orthoptic and Ophthamology Symposium Maidstone TU training London

May 2016 June 2016 June 2016 Dec 2016

Background NHS England working with NAHPIST developed an informatics strategy for the allied health professions in England (NHS England, 2017). The informatics strategy provides a shared view of the importance of the informatics agenda, the vision of informatics underpinning all aspects of service provision and service transformation, and the key actions that will need to be carried out over the coming years.

Jan 2017

May 2016

As Southern region trustee I have been co-opted on to NAHPIST. The Allied Health Professions (AHPs) have been involved in informatics developments since the 1980s. The latest national AHP informatics forum, the National AHP Information Strategy Team (NAHPIST) was set up in 2016, with representation from the 12 AHP professional bodies, NHS Digital, NHS England and the devolved administrations.

The informatics strategy recommends the establishment of a steering group to oversee the implementation of the strategy and to ensure that all recommended actions are carried out. I am a member of the steering group and have responsibility for ‘Data Sets’ . Actions as a result of NAHPIST membership: SNOMED Orthoptic Subset to be implemented April 2017 Member of Secondary Care Minimum Data Sets Project Advisory Group -Working with College of Optometrists on minimum data sets for Refraction in Sceondary Care settings.

NAHPIST aims to provide: Joy White “Strategic leadership to promote the use of information technologies, the collection of high quality data, and the use of information to enable Allied Health Professionals to improve person-centred care and service user experience across health and social care sectors in the UK.”




LOOP SUMMARY Some changes to the LOOP steering group have taken place, so your new steering group is: Julie Cartledge Lead England Sonia Macdiarmid England Judith Gray England Chris Timms England Tracy Crowley England Jane Hanley N Ireland Vicky Laidlaw Scotland Karen Phillips Wales (No rep Republic of Ireland) 18/5/2017 - LOOP Conference in Birmingham • Varied subject matter, including Vision Screening decommissioning, eHealth, SIG Update, Innovation and service redesign, Exemption update and Equitable Student allocation, CPD allocation and World Orthoptic Day, resulting in lots of discussion. • A competition was held for service innovation ideas, with prizes awarded to J Hoole, V Smerdon,S McDiarmid and P Downes, qualifying them for a place on the Leadership Conference – sadly, this conference was cancelled at short notice.

• LOOP Quality standard document sent out to Leads for comment and suggestion, lots of hard work from Sonia and Judith on the LOOP committee • Multiple survey monkeys done / emails out to Leads for information, ranging from Meditech use, Vision 2020 survey, band 3 support workers, now need to improve feedback from each of these questions, and ensure all results and feedback is captured and is available on the on LOOP page of the website • Proposed LOOP conference in Reading in October which unfortunately had to be postponed, but decision reached as Council to host a combined TU and LOOP day on 18th May 2017 – SurveyMonkey suggested that location of Birmingham, on a Thursday was the best time / day to hold this conference. This conference will be subsidised by BIOS, enabling free places for Heads / Leads and TU reps, with non-members being charged £150.00 Looking forward to another productive year in 2017 Julie Cartledge Lead for LOOP


AWOAC REPORT The Heads and Leads of Orthoptic Services in Wales (forming the All Wales Orthoptic Advisory Committee) provide professional and Strategic advice on Orthoptic and wider Ophthalmic service matters direct to Health Policy makers within the Welsh Assembly Government.

AWOAC invited the Head of Audiology & Ophthalmic Policy Sarah O’Sullivan-Adams to the plenary session at the recent AWOAC meeting specifically to discuss how Orthoptists and Orthoptic Services can play a direct role in the future of Ophthalmology services across Wales. The Eye Care Plan for Wales describes all the actions for Eye Care directed by Welsh Government that need to be put in place across both Primary and Secondary Health Care. Over the last few years most of the work has centred around primary care. AWOAC had concerns that

despite representation at all important service delivery meetings our voice wasn’t being heard, so were keen to promote our profession and make Policymakers aware that first and foremost ‘we are here’ and secondarily there’s more to our role than simply ‘putting a patch on’. AWOAC also wanted to point out that there’s more to Eye care professions than Optometry, Ophthalmology and Nursing. Following a very productive meeting, AWOAC have been tasked with writing a practice scope document to let Welsh Government know what services we already deliver and what we could deliver with appropriate resources and strategic support. Our Profession already has an active voice at Welsh Government Committee Level with representation on the Eye Care Steering Group, Welsh Therapies advisory group and of particular importance, the Children’s Vision



BIOS NEWS Group which are instrumental in driving change in Paediatric Eye Services. Of particular importance is the recent implementation of the All Wales Primary Vision Screening Pathway which is Orthoptic led ,enforced by mandate. Key Performance Indicators are reported to Government annually and statistics will from this year be published in the Health Statistics Bulletin. A further important workstream regards the development of the all Wales Electronic Patient Record encompassing primary & Secondary Care. AWOAC and BIOS have representation on the EPR Task & Finish Group and through previous work we have already applied systems thinking to process map data sheets for use in an EPR for all aspects of Orthoptic Services currently provided so are way ahead but there is still

much work to be done. The secretary for Health and Well Being has said the EPR has to be in place by April 2018 so there is still much to be achieved. Mark Deacon

Useful Royal College of Ophthalmologist link is: new-common-clinical-competency-frameworktostandardise-competences-for-ophthalmic-nonmedical-healthcare-professionals


AHPs INTO ACTION LAUNCHED 17TH JANUARY 2017 Members will remember the launch of a crowd sourcing process by Suzanne Rastrick, Chief Allied Health Professions officer, and her team at NHS England in April 2016. You were asked to answer questions online and suggest innovative ways in which AHPs can contribute to health care. More than 16,000 contributions were received from patients, carers, the public and healthcare staff including members of the 12 AHPs. The team at Clever Together headed by Dr Peter Thomond analysed the responses and created themes using triangulation of data and review of relevant health related documents. I contributed to two workshops where all AHPs representatives reviewed and critically challenged the data. I was very proud of the level of orthoptic input to the crowd sourcing which was proportionately higher than some of the larger AHP organisations. Two orthoptic case studies are featured in the final document which was launched on Tuesday 17th January 2017: “AHPs into action. Using Allied health professionals to transform health, care and wellbeing.” NHS England gateway publication 05863 NHS England website contains infographics and a video 14

which are useful resources for Orthoptists to use when making presentations to commissioners. Sir Bruce Keogh, National Medical Officer, NHS England, came to the launch to endorse the initiative and was enthusiastic about the methodology saying: the difference between strategies that fly is the ownership by the authors, strategies from Department of health that are top down don’t work. The plate form was reopened for comments on 16th January visit: #AHPsintoAction See also academy of fabulous stuff: @FabNHSStuff

Rowena , Suzanne Rastrick CAHPO and Laura Knight, vice chair association of dramatherapists





for boys and girls




boxes of 50

For further information please refer to: 176 Belasis Avenue Billingham TS23 1EY

Phone: 01642 530801 Fax: 01642 862383

Email: Internet:

2 Feb

Meet the HCPC – London

8 March

Meet the HCPC – Cardiff

30/31 March

Clinical Tutors Course, Leeds

3 May

BIOS Northern Region Spring Clinical Meeting 2017, Pinderfields Hospital, Wakefield

12 May

Clinical Tutors Day, GCU, Glasgow

15 May

Glaucoma and Retinal Disease SIG meeting

18 May

LOOP (Leads of the Orthoptic Profession) and BOS TU Conference, Birmingham

19 May

The Whipps Cross 7th Annual Paediatric and Strabismus Study Day

19 May

Neuro ophthalmology and orthoptics SIG study Day, Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham (Postgraduate centre).

12 June

Northern Ireland TU, venue to be confirmed BRITISH AND IRISH ORTHOPTIC SOCIETY


28/29 June 6-7 July

13 Sept

BIOS Cardiff Conference (incorporating BIOS and BOSTU AGMs 28th June 2017) Assessment and Management of Infants and Young Children with Severe Visual Impairment: Identifying risk and vulnerability and promoting optimal outcomes: Online registration available at SEN London




WHO’S WHO Chairman & Trustee

David Newsham - BIOS IOA Representative Anna Horwood - Research Director & Curriculum/ Education Project Lead Anne Bjerre - OCE Representative Jill Carlton - BIOJ Editor

Rowena McNamara -

Chair Designate Veronica Greenwood -

Vice Chair & Trustee (Professional Development, Education and SIGs) Alison Stanley -

BIOS Business Managers (Parallel Vision, Website, Membership, Employment Relations, Trades Union and Events Enquiries)

Full BIOS Trustee list (incorporating Finance and General Purpose Committee) Rowena McNamara - Chair, British & Irish Orthoptic Society Alison Stanley - Vice Chair of the British & Irish Orthoptic Society Midlands & East Trustee (England) - Julie Clarke Northern Trustee (England) - Kathryn Smart Northern Ireland Trustee - Jane Hanley Republic of Ireland Trustee - Gillian O’Mullane Scottish Trustee - Vacant Southern Trustee (England) - Joy White & Chloe Lafferty, Deputy Wales Trustee - Vacant Non-voting members Lesley-Anne Baxter - BIOS & BOSTU Advisor Helen Davis, Chair - Education Committee Julie Cartledge - Lead/Chair, Leads of Orthoptic Profession (LOOP)


Special Interest Group / Forum Leads Glaucoma & Retinal Disease: Lorraine North - and Michael Harmsworth Low vision: Matthew Costello while Kate Witkiss is on maternity leave Stroke and Neuro rehab: Claire Howard - Special Educational Needs: Anna O’ Connor - Laura Tuff - Specific Learning Difficulties: Claire Critchley - Vision Screening: Helen Griffiths - Private Practice forum: LIz Tomlin - Helen Collett - E-Health SIG Group: Michelle Wood - and Carla Eccleston - Neuro orthoptics/neuro ophthalmology: Joanne Adeoye - Exemptions: Claire Saha -

• BIOS Research “Bright Ideas” Competition • Experiences of applying for a research fellowship • Appeal for research recruits – Hemianopia Adaptation Study (HAST) • EUSCREEN - Implementation of optimized childhood vision and hearing screening programmes in middleincome countries in Europe • Special Learning Difficulties Orthoptists teaching Senco’s

THE BRITISH AND IRISH ORTHOPTIC SOCIETY Salisbury House, Station Road, Cambridge CB1 2LA UK T: 0203 853 9797 E: W:

Submissions by 9am 10th March be edited for length. 16

PARALLEL VISION - February 2017  


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