FOI

Freedom of Information

Freedom of Information (UK) Act 2000

Whitakers Optician’s Publication Scheme

Welcome to the Publication Scheme for Whitakers Opticians and adopted by all the opticians employed by Whitakers Opticians as required by the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

Introduction

This is a complete guide to the information routinely made available to the public by Armitage & Barker Ltd, trading as “Whitakers Opticians”.  It is a description of the information about our NHS services that we make publicly available.  It will be reviewed at regular intervals.

How the information is made available:             

The information within each Class is available in hard copy from:

Whitakers Opticians
34-36 Wharf Street
Sowerby Bridge
HX6 2 AE

Or can be printed from this website    

 This guide information

We will publish any changes we make to this guide or relevant information.  We will also publish any proposed changes or additions to publications already available.               

Cost of Information

For the most part, we will only charge for hard copies, or copies onto media.  Charges are as follows and will be reviewed regularly.

  • Accessed from our website – free of charge

  • Single hard copies – free of charge

  • As the Freedom of Information Act applies to the provision of information, a request for multiple hard copies does not fall within the provisions of the Act and will attract a charge for retrieval, photocopying and postage. We will inform you of the cost of these charges that will have to be paid in

  • E-mail will be free of charge.

 Your Rights to Information

  • The Freedom of Information Act 2000 is designed to promote openness and accountability amongst all organisations that receive public money.

  • Like all NHS contractors, since 1 January 2005 there has been a FOI obligation on optical practices to respond to requests about the NHS related information that they hold, and a right of access to that information has been established in law. 

  • These rights are subject to exemptions (see below) that have to be taken into consideration before releasing information.

  • In addition to accessing the information identified in this guide, you are entitled to request information about our NHS services under the NHS Openness Code 1995.

  • Under the Data Protection Act 1998, you are also entitled to access your clinical records or any other personal information held about you and you can contact any practice where your records are held to do this.

Feedback

If you have any comments about the operation of the Publication Scheme, or how we have dealt with your request for information from the scheme, please write to:

Whitakers Opticians
34-36 Wharf Street
Sowerby Bridge
HX6 2 AE

Classes of Information

All NHS information at Whitakers Opticians is held, retained and destroyed within NHS guidelines.  Our commitment to publish information excludes any information that can be legitimately withheld under the exemptions set out in the NHS Openness Code or Freedom of Information Act 2000, the main reasons being the protection of commercial interests and personal information under the Data Protection Act 1998.  This scheme has been written in accordance with those exemptions.  The information on this Scheme is grouped into the following categories:

 1) Who we are and what we do

  • “Whitakers Opticians” is a trading name of Armitage & Barker Ltd

  • The registered address of Armitage & Barker Ltd is 34-36 Wharf St, Sowerby Bridge, HX6 2AE.

  • We have two practices:

    34-36 Wharf St, Sowerby Bridge, HX6 2AE, telephone 01422 831030

    79 Southgate, Elland, HX5 0EP, telephone 01422 372008

  • Details of the opticians and optometrists employed in our practices (stores) can be obtained by contacting that practice directly.

  • Alternatively, details of all opticians and optometrists registered in the UK are available from the General Optical Council Tel: 0207 580 3898.

  • Armitage & Barker Ltd is registered with Companies House. Company registration number 9711956.

2) Financial and funding information: what we spend and how we spend it

For every sight test performed on behalf of the NHS the practice receives a set fee, which is fixed nationally. Both practices also carry out the following enhanced services on behalf of the NHS: Cataract referral and post-operative scheme; Glaucoma referral refinement scheme; Ocular Hypertension monitoring scheme: Primary Eyecare Acute Referral Scheme (PEARS). The fees paid by the NHS for each service are available from the practice on request. They include a contribution towards optometrists’ and staff salaries, equipment costs and other practice overheads. Information in this class will be published only where it is unlikely adversely to affect the commercial position of the firm or practice

 3) Our Priorities

To provide our patients with high quality eye care

 4) Decision Making

Any decisions made about the provision of NHS-funded services will be reflected in the services we provide and in the contract(s) held with the NHS.

5) Our policies and procedures

  • Complaints

  • Data protection

  • Health and safety

 Copies of the above policies are available on request from our Sowerby Bridge practice at the address listed above.

Complaints

If you have a complaint about any of our products or services, please do discuss any problems with the manager at the practice concerned in the first instance. We find that most issues can be put right at this stage. 

If the matter cannot be resolved in this way or you are unsatisfied with the response you receive, you may also contact the Optical Consumer Complaints Service (www.opticalcomplaints.co.uk)

A full copy of our complaints policy is available on request.

 6) Lists and Registers

We don’t keep lists and registers. Our patient records are confidential.

7) The Services We Offer

All our practices provide NHS-funded sight tests for those who are eligible.  Patients may also be entitled to NHS vouchers that can be used against the purchase of spectacles or contact lenses as required. To find out if you are eligible for this assistance please visit the NHS choices website (www.nhs.uk/NHSEngland/Healthcosts/Pages/Eyecarecosts.aspx), or ask for details in any of our practices.

Both our practices also provides the following NHS-funded enhanced services: Cataract referral and post-operative scheme; Glaucoma referral refinement scheme; Ocular Hypertension monitoring scheme & Primary Eyecare Acute Referral Scheme (PEARS).  

Appointments for sight tests can be booked over the phone, or by dropping into one of our practices. The contact details for both our practices are listed above.

Regular publications and information for the public

Information about optical and ocular conditions, sight tests, spectacles, and contact lenses, can be found on a number of websites including www.college-optometrists.org 

Some of this information is also available in patient leaflets.  These are freely available from both our practices.  To request a set of leaflets by post, please write to either practice at the addresses listed above.

February 2016

Useful Resources

Websites:

  • Information Commissioner            www.ico.gov.uk           

Publications:

Copyright:

Material available through this publication scheme is copyright unless otherwise indicated.  Unless expressly indicated to the contrary, it may be reproduced free of charge in any format or medium, provided it is done so accurately in a manner that will not mislead.  Where items are re-published or copied to others, you must identify the source and acknowledge copyright status.  This permit does not extend to third party material, accessed through the scheme.

For Guidance notes on FOI publication schemes see https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/guide-to-freedom-of-information/publication-scheme/