Minor Eyes Condition Service (MECS) Training and Accreditation
There are two parts to the training and accreditation of Optometrists and Contact Lens Opticians (CLO’s) for the MECS pathway in Staffordshire. Both Optometrists and CLOs are required to undergo the same training.
The training and accreditation for MECS is overseen by the Wales Optometry Postgraduate Education Centre (WOPEC), and delivered locally by lead assessors from Staffordshire LOC. Upon its completion, the successful practitioner is awarded the national LOCSU MECS certificate of accreditation. The first two parts are based on the course used to train optometrists who provide MECS in Wales. Part 1 must be completed before Part 2 can be started. A foreign body removal training workshop is provided at the same time as the Part 2 assessment.
1) MECS Part 1: Distance Learning Lectures
Practitioners need to complete a course of theoretical training:
2) MECS Part 2: Practical Station Assessments
WOPEC has previously worked together with Staffordshire LOC to organise practical assessments for Optometrists consisting of five 5 minute objective structured clinical examination (OSCE) stations, held under invigilated conditions. ABDO is working with WOPEC to provide practical assessments for CLO’s.
These are designed to assess optometrists’ skill and knowledge in the areas of referral, communication, clinical decision making and interpretation of results. These have previously been staged in ophthalmology outpatient departments or from larger opticians’ practices
Examples of typical OSCE stations:
· Station 1 Volk BIO
Practitioners are required to demonstrate their ability to do indirect ophthalmoscopy. A model eye will be mounted on a slit- lamp; within the model eye there are words which practitioners must transcribe correctly.
· Station 2 Structured Viva
Practitioners are required to interpret a variety of clinical data- this may include pictures, results of clinical examinations, clinical signs, or a video of a history and symptoms.
· Station 3 Patient interaction
An actor plays the part of the patient. Practitioners are observed interacting with the patient. They may be required to:
. Station 4 Structured Viva
A repetition of station 2 above
. Station 5 Referral
Practitioners are required to interpret a variety of clinical data- this may include pictures, results of clinical examinations or clinical signs. Based on the data, they may be required to write a short report or a referral letter. Alternatively, they may be required to request an emergency referral. In this scenario the assessor acts as a casualty doctor on the other end of the phone.
Paediatrics Pathway: Training, Accreditation And Equipment
• All children are screened by orthoptist when in reception year
• Those with reduced vision in absence of squint or obvious pathology are referred to a COSI
• Patient then followed up by the orthoptist
• Cycloplegic refraction, kid’s trial frame
• Media and fundus check: head set BIO (22 or 20D lens)