Optician Awards: Revolution in services with tech

Emma White speaks to Dr Martin Smith about investing in technology, modern optometry and future goals

Lincoln-based independent Martin Smith Opticians stood out to the judges of the 2021 Optician Awards due to its ‘successful patient management and exemplary action as an ambassador for modern optometry’. Optometrist and independent prescriber Dr Martin Smith says: ‘It felt great to win as I have wanted an Optician Award for ages. It’s such an iconic trophy and it is displayed with pride of place on our reception desk.’

For Smith, modern optometry is a service that should be moving away from spectacle sales subsidising underfunded clinical services. ‘It’s a model which has always sat uncomfortably with me and I think it’s time to give it up. I am quite happy to offer spectacle sales as a service, but the clinical side should be able to stand on its own – this model avoids a conflict of interest,’ he says. Smith’s vision for optometry encompasses all non-surgical ophthalmology as well: ‘The evidence suggests that suitably qualified optometrists are capable of successfully managing 95% of ophthalmology presentations.’

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