Chairmans Update – July 2015

Chairman’s update 30/06/15 Dear colleague, As we come into the holiday period I thought I would update you on some of the current and future work that ONI are involved with. Much of the current work for optometry in both primary care and hospital is channelled via the “Developing Eye Care Partnerships Strategy” (DEP) where […]

Optical Vouchers – 1% increase confirmed

Our Chair, David Barnes has just received a letter of confirmation from the Department of Health and Social Services, confirming that the optical voucher value in Northern Ireland has increased by 1% from April 2015. This is in line with the value rise in other regions of the UK.

Meet our FODO rep at Optrafair!

  Calling all ONI Levy Payers!  Our very own FODO rep, William Stockdale will be at the FODO stand at Optrafair this weekend, so why not call and see him and let him know what you think would be the best use of the Levy fund.

ONI AGM 6.30pm on Tuesday 21 April 2015 Lodge Hotel Coleraine

Please find detailed below the Agenda for our forthcoming meeting: AGENDA 1        Welcome – David Barnes, Chairman ONI   2        Apologies   3        Minutes of previous meeting   4       Chairman’s report – David Barnes   5       Treasurer’s report – Moyra McClure, Treasurer ONI   6       Any Other Business.   […]

GOC Consultation Document on Standards of Practice

Have your say!  The GOC are currently working on a consultation document on Standards of Practice and are looking for feedback from members.  They would like to encourage all optometrists, dispensing opticians and students to have a look at the following proposal and give feedback. This is an ideal opportunity for members of Optometry Northern […]

College of Optometrists, NIOS and ONI CET Event

A Joint College of Optometrists, NIOS and ONI free member CET event will take place in Northern Ireland on Tuesday, 21 April from 6.00 pm. Expected timings for the evening: 6.00-6.45 pm  Registration – Buffet and Networking 6.30-7.15 pm  ONI AGM 7.15-7.25 pm  College Talk by a College Representative 7.25-8.25 pm  Lecture 8.25-9.25 pm  Peer […]

CET and GOS Payments

Good News Everyone! David has asked me to let you know that the payments will be made soon to all optometrists for the CET grant and all practices of back payments for GOS for the year 14-15. Thanks Sara

Sight Test Survey Results

Thank you to all of the practices who completed the recent Sight Test Survey.  Some interesting findings.  Here is a link to the published document:

ONI welcomes new College Representative

  ONI are delighted to welcome Sara McCullough (pictured) as our new College Representative on Council.  Sara replaces Kathryn Saunders, who has decided to step down from ONI Council.  We would like to thank Kathryn for all her hard work over the years, especially in the field of children’s optometry, and wish her all the […]

Four Nations Update

ONI Chair, David Barnes headed a team of four representatives from ONI, which attended the Four Nations meeting in Glasgow on Thursday.  The Four Nations meet every eighteen months to discuss developments in optometry in different regions of the UK. Representatives attending the meeting included Optometry Scotland, Optometry Wales, Optometry Northern Ireland, AOP, LOCSU, FODO, the […]

Chairman’s Update – September 2014

Dear colleagues, This year National Eye Health Week runs from 22-28th September. This is an opportunity for anyone involved in eye care to promote good eye health to the general public. Optometry NI has partnered with RNIB to promote the “Love Your Eyes” campaign. RNIB research tells us that 50% of sight loss is preventable […]

Professional Certificate in Medical Retina

The College of Optometrists accredited Professional Certificate in Medical Retina is the first of its kind to be offered in the UK.  It is offered through the University of Ulster through online and some face-to-face teaching and is supported by optometrists and ophthalmologists with relevant expertise.  The Prof Cert in Medical Retina joins the already […]

Date Set for 2015 AGM!

As part of our ongoing efforts in which we are trying to get in touch with more of our members, ONI have decided to try something different for the AGM next year. Our AGM next year will take place (a little earlier than usual) on Tuesday 21 April 2015.  We will be working with our […]

Belfast CET Day – Sunday 9 November 2014

Achieve 11 GOC Or 14 AOI points! An Ocular Disease Update one day event is to be held at La Mon House Hotel, Belfast.  The course is being run by Dr Scott Mackie.  Speakers include Prof Christine Purslow (Allergic Eye Disease), Dr Stuart McGimpsey (Detection and Treatment Pathway for vitreo-Macular Traction and Macula hole), Dr Alasdair […]

National Eyecare Health Week 22-28 September 2014

National Eyecare Health Week gives all members of the profession a chance to work in tandem with the national campaign highlighting the importance of regular eye examinations.  Why not approach it from a local angle and check out some of the fundraising ideas at You could even have your own “carrot walk”! Sara

Glaucoma Referral Refinement – Keep up the Good Work!

Glaucoma Referral Refinement continues to work well.  Initial figures show that the programme is weeding out 65% of cases that previously would have been referred on to the Hospital Eye Service. Regarding admin of the LES claims, there is a bit more work to do.  There have been a number of rejected claims and some with no […]

Next ONI Council Meeting

The next meeting of ONI Council will take place on Monday 8 September 2014.  Items which will be discussed will include Glaucoma Referral Refinement Update, Healthcare Numbers, Electronic referral amongst others. If you have items which you would like to be raised (remember it is YOUR society) – please feel free to email me or […]

Northern Ireland IPs get NHS pads

  The first group of Independent Prescriber (IP) optometrists in Northern Ireland have started to receive their NHS prescription pads from the Northern Ireland Health Board. Among the first to get their prescription pads was optometrist and AOP councillor, Brian McKeown (pictured). Mr McKeown said: “It’s fantastic to be able to provide this service, especially […]

Sight Test Survey 2014

Thank you to all the optometrists, who completed and returned the 2014 Sight Test and Ophthalmic Public Health Survey. The return rate for the 2014 Northern Ireland Sight Test and Ophthalmic Public Health Survey was approximately 35%. The Survey Report can be accessed at the following link  and you are encouraged to read it as it […]

Voucher Values

Dear colleagues Just a quick note to say that Optometry NI has agreed to a 2% increase in GOS vouchers from 1st April 2014. Optometry in England, Wales, and Scotland have also agreed to this increase. In previous years it has taken a while to process this change with practices being paid retrospectively back to […]

Chairman Update March 2014

For the foreseeable future the main focus will be on the delivery of the “Developing Eye Care Partnerships” strategy which covers all aspects of eye care services in Northern Ireland. Optometry plays a major role in the delivery of the strategy outcomes and this is reflected in the representation optometry (both hospital and community) has […]

Electronic Referral Pilot Scheme

A pilot scheme on electronic referral was carried out for 10 weeks in the Southern Health Trust Area in May/June/July.  A total of ten practices participated having been selected at random, to represent a range of practice profiles including independent and multiples.  High resolution images of the patient’s retina were encrypted and sent to the […]

Community Acute Eye Service

In December, Helen Knox, David Barnes, Andrew Petticrew and Sara Ball went to Stormont.  They presented a proposal to the Health Committee which included plans to include and use the community optometrist for the treatment of patients with red eye or minor injury to the eye.  The proposal was to educate the public to the […]