The Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care (PSA) has today published its review of the General Optical Council’s (GOC) performance in 2021-2022.

The report highlights several areas of work where the GOC has performed well, including: 

  • The improvements made to the time it takes to progress cases through its fitness to practise system, noting this compares favourably to other regulators, as well as recognising the ongoing programme of work that will further positively impact timeliness.
  • Strong performance on equality, diversity, and inclusion (EDI), including the comprehensive registrant EDI data the GOC holds and collects as part of its annual public perceptions survey, which will provide robust evidence to make informed decisions about our work.

The report provides important feedback on stakeholder communications and support. The GOC said that, though much was positive, it “will reflect on comments relating to the stakeholder communications in the implementation of its new Education and Training Requirements (ETR) and the new Continuing Professional Development (CPD) system. The GOC is already implementing improvements in this area, for example, in relation to its recent call for evidence on the Opticians Act and associated policies.”

Chair of Council, Dr Anne Wright CBE, said:

“I welcome the outcome of the PSA’s review. It recognises the significant progress we have made in improving the timeliness of fitness to practise cases. 

This progress could not have been achieved without the substantial commitment and energy of GOC staff and members, and I am glad that we can celebrate this success collectively. 

As a Council, the PSA’s Performance Review is useful assurance that we are meeting our statutory responsibilities as a regulator and protecting the public by upholding high standards in the optical professions.”  

Chief Executive and Registrar, Leonie Milliner, said: 

“I am delighted with the outcome of the PSA’s annual review of our performance from October 2021 to December 2022. The GOC meeting all the PSA’s Standards for Good Regulation is a significant step in our ambition to become a world-class regulator and we will continue to build on this positive performance. 

The report recognises high standards across all areas of our work including our regulatory operations, registration processes, in upholding high standards in education, policy and professional standards, in our communications functions, and of course in the vital area of corporate governance.

I would like to thank all our staff and members for their important contributions.” 

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