Statement on testing of sight


The General Optical Council statement on the testing of sight.


Statement on testing of sight

Refraction for the purpose of issuing a prescription is an essential part of the sight test[1]. As such, refraction for the purpose of sight testing is restricted[2] and can only be conducted by a registered optometrist, a registered medical practitioner or a student optometrist under supervision. No part of the sight test can be delegated to a dispensing optician or contact lens optician, even under supervision.

Refraction for purposes not associated with the testing of sight, for example to verify a prescription issued by an optometrist or registered medical practitioner, is not restricted. This can therefore be undertaken by dispensing opticians and contact lens opticians.


[1] under Section 26 of the Opticians Act 1989 (as amended by the Opticians Act 1989 Amendment Order 2005) and the Sight Testing (Examination and Prescription) (No. 2) Regulations 1989.

[2] by Section 24 of the Opticians Act and Rule 3 of the Testing of Sight by Persons Training as Optometrists Rules 1993.