AOP welcomes increase in fees paid to optometry practices for NHS eye examinations.

The Association of Optometrists (AOP) has welcomed the Scottish Government’s announcement of a 6% fee increase to optometry practices delivering NHS-funded eye examinations.

Fees for all General Ophthalmic Services (GOS) eye examinations undertaken in Scotland on or after 1 April 2023 will see the increase, including domiciliary visiting fees.

Kevin Wallace, AOP Councillor for Scotland, said: “We welcome the Scottish Government’s continued commitment to primary eyecare services here in Scotland. This model of care, which provides comprehensive eye examinations and assessments for a variety of eye conditions that is free for patients, supports health parity across Scotland. This increase in funding will only further support improved access for the most vulnerable patient groups in our communities.”

Mr Wallace continued: “This uplift could not have happened without the dedication of our colleagues at Optometry Scotland and the support of the Scottish Government which clearly sees the value of optometry in early detection and prevention in protecting the nation’s health.”

Scotland is the only UK nation that offers NHS-funded eye examinations that are free to patients as a universal provision – introduced in 2006. 

The increase is in alignment with the 6% uplift in fees awarded to General Dental Services (GDS) and General Medical Services (GMS).