From January 2022, Continuing Education and Training (CET) will be no more.

This is likely to be one of the outcomes of the GOC review of CET, which is currently under consultation. Among changes that have been proposed is a move from CET to Continuing Professional Development (CPD). I welcome this as, not only does CPD better reflect evolution and progress, I was never convinced that the difference was made clear in the first place.

Other sensible changes being proposed include dropping the current competence subjects and, instead, use four categories that better reflect the GOC Standards of Practice. Larger CET providers will, I am sure, welcome plans to drop individual CET approvals and instead introduce provider accreditation. Auditing is the key here. Optician CET is published, so any one can audit us – and many do! Local ‘live’ meetings, however, may need robust auditing to reassure us that they are not commercially slanted. The same has to be said for the plan to include non-approved CPD; we all know medics who get CPD for showing a book receipt. Finally, a reflective exercise from every registrant will become mandatory. I have some concerns that, among the people with whom this must be agreed, ‘employers’ are listed.

The opportunity to give your view about the proposals is still available on the consultation hub of the GOC website (https://consultation.optical.org) and the linked survey remains open until August 20. Do take part. As a wise man once said: ‘It is better to regret something you have done than regret something you haven’t done.’

I have to go now. The College of Optometrists has been awarded funding by the Department for Transport to carry out a study on the associations between eye sight and road traffic accidents and wants me to complete a survey. Must first brush up on the angles of resolution of castles.