A change in legislation will be sought by the General Optical Council to extend regulation to all businesses carrying out restricted functions.
Dr Anne Wright, chair of the Council, said: ‘Extending regulation to all businesses carrying out restricted functions is long overdue. This vital reform would close an important gap in public protection and create a more level playing field for optical businesses.’
The GOC outlined its intention to draft a framework for business regulation that would be subject to public consultation. Its response followed an analysis of the information received during a call for evidence on the Opticians Act and associated GOC policies.
The GOC received 353 responses and over 8,000 individual comments between March and July 2022, which included views, information and factual evidence. The call for evidence formed part of the Department for Health and Social Care’s (DHSC) review of related legislation to all healthcare regulators.
It intended to ensure consistency between the powers that regulators have to deliver their functions and operating frameworks. Dr Wright said the wealth of responses meant the GOC was well positioned to create a modernised legislative framework and further engage with the profession.
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