The College of Optometrists

Key points

  • You must act in accordance with the current legislation controlling the use and supply of drugs in optometric practice.
  • You should take particular care when using or supplying drugs to patients in at-risk groups.
  • You must be aware of the indications, cautions, contraindications and side effects of any drugs you instil or supply.
  • You must tell patients how to use the drug you supply and what to do in the event of an adverse incident following instillation of eye drops or supply of a drug.
  • You should tell a patient to attend the local Accident and Emergency department if you are not available to deal with an emergency or adverse reaction following the instillation of eye drops or supply of a drug.
  • You may delegate the instillation of eye drops to another member of staff but you remain responsible for the patient.
  • You should not treat yourself or someone close to you, or prescribe or prepare written orders for prescription-only medicines (POM) for yourself or someone close to you, except in the cases of minor ailments or emergencies.
  • You should store all drugs according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • You should report adverse reactions to medicines or medical devices using the appropriate reporting schemes.
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This Guidance does not change what you must do under the law.

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