Dudley Healthy Living Optician Scheme

The Healthy Living Optician has been a success so far!

We are looking to extend our current Healthy Living Opticians (HLO) programme.

With recent cuts all services are struggling but our commissioners see the value of Healthy Living premises and have committed to support expansion and progression. This is a really positive move and one we hope you as a contractor will embrace – by becoming a HLO you are demonstrating commitment and willing to proactively promote health and wellbeing to the patients and communities you all serve.
To date we have 8 HLOs in Dudley (the only 8 across the country!) that have achieved great things in the time they have become accredited including:

Supporting 18 individuals in 6 months to stop smoking
Speaking to over 6,000 people about alcohol – 12% of those were drinking at levels that are hazardous to their health
In just 5 months completing 92 health checks identifying people at risk of developing cardiovascular disease, stroke, diabetes, kidney disease, dementia

How amazing is that?

Please see the following documents:

These will explain more about what you need to do to become a HLO.

If you are interested in starting this journey then please let me know and we will arrange to come and see you and your staff to discuss the project in more detail, if you would like to talk to the practices that have been successful in participating in this scheme then we can arrange that too.

Currently those in the scheme can offer one or more of the following services:

• Smoking Cessation Services
• Alcohol Screening
• NHS Health Checks such as glucose testing and cholesterol
• Weight Management

If you want to know more or wish to take part please contact us.

Please also take a look at the Dudley HLO public facing website.

Dudley practices to deliver pioneering healthy living scheme

Dudley Local Optical Committee (LOC) has joined forces with Public Health Dudley to develop the first Health Living Optician concept in England.

The pioneering project will see optical practices across Dudley provide NHS health checks, smoking cessation advice and health promotion. The innovative scheme for optics builds on Dudley’s successful Healthy Living Pharmacy initiative which provides a portfolio of valuable public health services under one ‘brand’, together with a robust accreditation process.

Giving LOCSU’s support to the pilot, Katrina Venerus said that optometrists and opticians have the professional skills and geographical coverage to help deliver public health messages in the heart of the community.

“We will be looking to use the model being developed in Dudley to persuade other public health teams in England to roll out the Health Living Optician concept in their area,” said Venerus, Managing Director of LOCSU.

“It is a tremendous opportunity for practices to get involved in providing wider services and health promotion for patients and demonstrates the key role optometrists and opticians can play.”

And she praised the work of the LOC in getting bringing the concept to fruition. “This groundbreaking project came about thanks to the tenacity of Dudley LOC Chair Shamina Asif who has a special interest in public health,” the Managing Director said.

“Shamina began knocking on the door of the local public health team almost four years ago looking to talk to them about a smoking cessation scheme. But it wasn’t until early 2013 that she managed to meet with the Director of Public Health, Valerie Little. The Director could see that there was a potential role for optical practices.  Valerie subsequently introduced Shamina to the team that was working on the Healthy Living Pharmacy scheme.”

“In collaboration with the LOC, the Public Health Dudley team concluded that a similar concept could be extended to community optical practices and it is fantastic to see the idea finally come to life. We know that lifestyle can have a major impact on eye health, for example smoking doubles the risk of age-related macular degeneration, so there is an obvious public health link.”

At the launch event to explain to practices how the scheme worked, Michelle Dyoss, Public Health Practitioner (Pharmacy) said: “We are delighted to have been able to work with the LOC on the Healthy Living Optician scheme. The Healthy Living Pharmacy scheme extends beyond the ‘traditional’ pharmacy services to focus on a spectrum of needs relating to healthy living and lifestyles, through direct provision of advice and interventions and sign-posting to other services. It is great that the people of Dudley will now be able to access many of the same services at a local optical practice.”

Shamina Asif, Dudley LOC Chair, said: “These are exciting times for Dudley LOC. We are very grateful to our colleagues in the Public Health Dudley team for developing the Healthy Living Optician scheme which is the first of its kind in England and also to LOCSU for their support.

“For the population of Dudley, the Healthy Living Optician scheme will provide a valuable resource for communities and will make a tangible contribution to improvement in health and wellbeing”