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Following changes made to the GOC guidelines, Cardiff University and Ulster University have become the first optometry programs in the UK to meet new education and training requirements set by the General Optical Council (GOC), who regulates opticians. The new standards, which were introduced in 2021, aim to ensure that newly qualified optometrists are equipped with the skills and knowledge needed to provide safe and effective patient care. 

Under the new standards, optometry programs must cover a range of topics, including clinical skills, communication, professionalism, and clinical decision-making. They must also provide opportunities for students to gain practical experience and work with patients to meet new optometrist rules and regulations.  

Cardiff University and Ulster University were both found to be in compliance with the new standards after a review by the GOC. The universities were commended for their commitment to high-quality education and their efforts to meet the new optometry requirements. 

The new standards are part of the GOC’s broader efforts to promote patient safety and ensure that optometrists are equipped to meet the evolving needs of the profession. The GOC will continue to review optometry programs to ensure that they meet the new standards, and it encourages universities to engage with the process and provide feedback on the new requirements. 

The announcement has been welcomed by the Association of Optometrists, which has praised the two universities for their commitment to providing high-quality optometric education. The association has also called on other optometry programs to follow their example and meet the new requirements to help promote patient safety and the future of the profession. 

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