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Creating Guidelines for Optometrists

Professor John Lawrenson from the School of Health Sciences has been commissioned by the College of Optometrists to create and update a set of evidence-based Clinical Management Guidelines (CMGs). The work was undertaken in partnership with Professor Roger Buckley at Anglia Ruskin University.

The Challenge

Under new legislation introduced in June 2008, optometrists are able to train to prescribe any licensed medicine for conditions of the eye and surrounding tissues. This decision was based on the recommendation of the Commission on Human Medicines (CHM), who also advised that Clinical Management Guidelines, produced by their professional body, should inform the scope of practice of prescribing optometrists and to support them in their new role.

The Solution

The work undertaken by Professors Lawrenson and Buckley forms part of an e-formulary, which aims to provide guidance for qualified eye professionals in the prescription of medicine for the treatments of more than 60 eye conditions.

Professor Lawrenson is also involved in the ongoing review and updating of the Guidelines along with the testing and validation of software which provides optometrists with a diagnostic toolkit of eye conditions.