Specialist Optometrist - 12 month mat cover

Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust
£51,488 to £57,802 a year pa inc HCA (pro rata)
Closing date
1 Oct 2023

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Other Health Profession
Band 7
Part Time
The South East London Diabetic Eye Screening Programme is one of the largest eye screening programmes in the country, offering screening to over 100,000 patients. The multi-disciplinary screening team includes Optometrists and specialist Screeners qualified with the Diploma in Health Screening.

We currently have a vacancy for a fixed term specialist Optometrist to provide maternity cover. They will work predominantly across sites in Bromley with some travel required to all of the other screening locations in the South east London programme, based in Bexley & Greenwich, Southwark, Lewisham and Lambeth.

Main duties of the job

Our programme Optometrists undertake Fundus and Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) capture, Slit Lamp retinal examinations, assessment of Optical Coherence Tomography scans and grading of digital retinal images as well supporting the highest standards of clinical governance via audit and quality assurance activities.

The successful applicant will be an enthusiastic professional who is comfortable working independently in a busy clinical environment, as well as work as part of a large screening team and able to deliver the highest standards of patient care. The successful candidate will be part of the senior clinical team so being able to make sound clinical judgements, be flexible in their working approach, able to manage a busy workload and have a willingness to support and be part of service improvement projects, as well as being able to motivate, support and provide feedback, training and guidance to other members of the team.

The screening programme is an ideal environment for those wishing to work within a busy clinical environment and develop their medical retina knowledge as well as the fields of clinical governance and service improvement.

Ideally we are looking for Optometrists who already possesses the City and Guilds Diploma in Retinopathy Screening or the Level 3 Diploma in Health Screening, or has demonstrable knowledge or experience in working within a Medical Retina environment.

Closing date : 1st October at midnight

About us

Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust comprises five of the UK's best known hospitals - Guy's, St Thomas', Evelina London Children's Hospital, Royal Brompton and Harefield - as well as community services in Lambeth and Southwark, all with a long history of high quality care, clinical excellence, research and innovation.

We are among the UK's busiest, most successful foundation trusts. We provide specialist care for patients including heart and lung, cancer and renal services as well as a full range of local hospital and community services for people in Lambeth and Southwark.

We have a long tradition of clinical and scientific achievement and - as part of King's Health Partners - we are one of England's eight academic health sciences centres, bringing together world-class clinical services, teaching and research. We have one of the National Institute for Health Research's biomedical research centres, established with King's College London in 2007, as well as dedicated clinical research facilities.

Job description

Job responsibilities

Purpose of Job/Job Summary

The Optometrist is a key member of the screening service and is responsible for delivering quality, patient focused, care as well as contributing to the highest standards of clinical governance. Principle areas of responsibility for this role are undertaking Slit Lamp Bio-microscopy examinations, assessing Optical Coherence Tomography scans as well as clinical audit, training and contributing to continual service improvement.

The role is expected to work predominantly across the following clinic sites:
  • Queen Marys Hospital (Sidcup)
  • Royal Arsenal Health Centre
  • Beckenham Beacon Health Clinic
  • St Thomas' Hospital
  • Lewisham Hospital
  • Tessa Jowell Health Centre
Key Result Areas/Principal Responsibilities
  • Undertake slit lamp bio-microscopy screening clinics to grade and refer diabetic retinopathy and any other condition as deemed necessary under the direction of the clinical lead. This includes making patient assessments and clinical decisions regarding patients eye health, testing visual acuity and installation of eye drops according to protocol.
  • Assist in the delivery of induction programmes for newly appointed staff,and train/ supervise trainee Screener/ Graders, including assessing the screening teams initial and ongoing training and development needs
  • Provide patients with complexwritten and verbal information about diabetic eye disease and other eye conditions, including cataracts and glaucoma
  • Grade digital retinal images for the presence of diabetic retinopathy, to referral outcome level, in line with local and national guidance
  • Undertake clinical audits as and when required, reporting findings to the Programme Manager and Clinical Lead
  • Maintain a high level of professional continuing education and training to function effectively in an advancing and dynamic field
  • Mentor, teach and assess screeners/graders in order to attain accreditation of the Diploma in Health Screening
  • Provide accurate and timely information as required by the Programme Manager or Clinical Lead
  • Actively participate in multi-disciplinary team meetings including presenting audit findings
  • Cover retinal screening clinics in locations across the programme in the case of emergency
  • Identifying conflicting outcomes between ophthalmology and the screening programme, advising the Programme Manager and Clinical Lead accordingly
  • Ensure the appropriate reporting and investigation of any clinical and non-clinical incidents relating to the screening and grading of patients, feeding back where appropriate to team members and patients
  • The post holder may be required to work some Saturdays on a rota
  • Liaise with the primary health care team (GPs, diabetes specialist nurses) and secondary care team, ensuring that the service is responsive to needs
  • Be proactive in offering health promotion and participate in health promotion activities
  • Contribute to the appraisal of the clinical team to improve standards of care and compliance with Care Quality Commission standards
  • Ensuring that outcome data on those patients requiring slit lamp biomicroscopy assessment due to ungradable images is returned the screening administration office
  • Undertake patient assessment using visual fields equipment, Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT), biometry, contact tonometry and interpret results
  • To undertake other duties as requested from time to time as are consistent with the post.

  • Person Specification



    • Current registration with the General Optical Council
    • Masters level qualification in Optometry, OR relevant equivalent experience


    • Assessor for City and Guilds Diploma in Diabetic Retinal Screening
    • Previous accreditation as a slit lamp examiner within a diabetic eye screening programme
    • Holder of City and Guilds Diploma in Diabetic Retinal Screening



    • Experience of undertaking clinical audit and internal quality assurance and using these to improve quality in self and others
    • Experience of delivering high quality care to complex patients with multiple co-existing morbidities


    • Experience as a senior grader in a diabetic eye screening programme and the ability to manage a large caseload
    • Experience of working within a hospital eye clinic or participation in community based extended scope schemes
    • Experience of capturing and interpreting optical coherence tomography scans



    • Excellent communication skills - oral and written
    • Excellent slit lamp skills with the ability to undertake Volk lens examination of the retina and other slit lamp based techniques such as contact tonometry
    • Willingness to learn new skills and adapt to new ways of working to develop an efficient clinical routine
    • Team player, with good interpersonal skills and ability to thrive in a multi-disciplinary environment
    • Good IT skills with ability to understand complex software pathways
    • Specialist and in depth knowledge of diabetic retinopathy disease, and its relationship to other eye conditions together with a broad knowledge of diabetes and its associated risk factors
    • A clear understanding of national guidance on diabetic eye screening and the eye screening agenda
    • Ability to be flexible and maintain the highest standards of care in a busy clinical environment
    • Displays Trust values and behaviours

    Employer details

    Employer name

    Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust


    South East London Diabetic Eye Screening programme, Guys Hospital, 3rd Floor Conybeare House


    SE1 9RT

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