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Changes in medicines legislation for orthoptists

Changes to legislation in April 2016 introduced exemptions for orthoptists to sell and supply certain medicines on their own initiative in the course of their professional practice.

These medicines are in the form of eye drops and ointments for topical use, including a small number of antibiotics. In order to use the exemptions, orthoptists must undertake a relevant HCPC approved post-registration training programme and obtain an annotation on the Register.

We consulted between March and May 2016 on standards which set out the skills, knowledge and understanding required for orthoptists to use exemptions and standards for education programmes. These standards were published in 2016. Education providers wanting to run training programmes are now able to request a visit from us. Once approved, orthoptists will be able to commence an approved programme, successful completion of which will lead to annotation of the Register and access to the medicines exemptions.

We will keep this page updated.