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First optometrists appointed clinical leadership training fellows

Health Education and Improvement Wales (HEIW) has appointed the first ever optometrists into the roles of Welsh Clinical Leadership Training Fellows (WCLTF) 2020/2021.

Tim Morgan and Sarah Schumm will join their fellow 2020/2021 WCLTF cohort in taking one year out of employment to participate in a programme of leadership training, with the opportunity to shadow leaders from across health, education and training in Wales.

Run by HEIW, with co-sponsorship from the South West Wales Regional Optical Committee (SWWROC) and Welsh Government, the WCLTF programme will require fellows to work on an innovative healthcare project which must be delivered at the end of their programme year.

Sarah, who has been a community optometrist for 16 years, is leading on a project around workforce planning, co-sponsored by SWWROC. She said “I am incredibly excited at the prospect of making a positive impact on the eye care pathway, linking primary, secondary and therapeutic eye care to create a complete package that benefits both the profession and the patient’

Tim owns a local practise in North Wales and will be leading on eye care reform, working closely with Welsh Government who co-sponsored his project. He said "I'm absolutely thrilled to be entrusted with this opportunity to explore aspects of Primary Eye Care design.

“It's so heartening for the profession, and our patients, that HEIW and Welsh Government see the value in this role and have high expectations for quality improvement."

Local Optometrist Michael Charlton and Chair of the SWWROC said “We are delighted to support this work. This is such an exciting time for the profession, having access to the resources and expertise within HEIW.

“We look forward to seeing the outcomes from the project”.

The WCLFT programme is now in its eight year, with work already planned for the next cohort of clinical fellows from within the optometry profession.