Statement on verification of contact lens specifications and definition of aftercare

Closes 24 Oct 2023

Opened 29 Aug 2023


Section 27 of the Opticians Act 1989 (‘the Act’) sets out the requirements for the sale and supply of prescription contact lenses. In order to be supplied with prescription contact lenses, a person must have an in-date contact lens specification which has been issued following a contact lens fitting. Where the sale is being made under the general direction (rather than supervision) of a registrant, and a copy[1] of the contact lens specification is provided, section 27(3)(ii) of the Act requires the copy of the specification to be verified with the person who provided the original specification.

Section 27(3B) of the Act requires that the seller must make arrangements for the buyer “to receive aftercare in so far as, and for as long as, may be reasonable in his particular case” but does not provide a definition of aftercare.

Following a call for evidence on the Act in 2022, our view is that:

  • verification of a copy of a contact lens specification is no longer necessary, provided that the specification is clear, does not contain any obvious errors and has not obviously been tampered with; and
  • a definition of aftercare should be provided that gives sufficient detail to ensure the public is protected.

We have drafted a statement setting out our position. The draft statement, together with a draft impact assessment, is available in the ‘related’ section at the end of this page.

[1] A copy can be a physical copy or an electronic copy.

Why your views matter

We are interested in stakeholders’ views on this statement to ensure that there are no unintended consequences of this statement and/or risks that cannot be mitigated against.

This consultation will last for a period of eight weeks.

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