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 - ABDO College

Success for first optical assistant workshops open to all in the profession

ABDO College has successfully opened its Optical Assistant (OA) Practical Skills Workshops to all sector colleagues, not just those studying on the OA training programme.

The first two all-day workshops have taken place at the ABDO National Resource Centre in Birmingham. The College’s courses coordinator for optical support programmes, Rian Love, said: “This workshop course underpins basic repair and adjustments that are vital in day-to-day practice, as well as the basics of how to interpret a prescription to best guide frame selection. In addition, it offers great insight into how our more vulnerable patients may experience the world with simulation spectacles, which students have always found a beneficial experience. “I am delighted that we are offering places on this workshop to a wider audience, enabling better patient care and understanding to everyone.”

The workshop sessions are specifically tailored to the OA role and enable students to learn basic frame repairs and adjustments and discuss differing patient scenarios with their possible solutions.
The students also get to experience simulations of the visual symptoms suffered by patients with common eye diseases or conditions and they also learn about the common ‘red eye’ conditions and who can help support those patients in practice.
ABDO College head of operational services, Steve Hertz, said: “The practical skills workshop has been a key part of our optical assistant course since its launch. The feedback has been consistently positive, and we are now pleased to offer this valuable and enjoyable day more widely.”
Workshop presenter, Jo Underwood, College adviser and founding principal, said: “It is always refreshing to see how many employers clearly value their optical staff and send them on these short courses.
“It is a delight to see that the delegates fully involve themselves in the sessions, and how much knowledge and skill is available and shared among the groups. The sessions combine a mixture of practical workshops, seminars, peer discussions and simulation labs.
“The delegates always seem to have an enjoyable day, share their knowledge among each other and say how valuable the day has been.”