Local Optometric Committee



A Minor Eye Conditions Service (MECS) examination will provide a timely assessment of the needs of a patient presenting with an eye condition. This will be undertaken by an accredited optometrist within suitably equipped premises who will manage the patient appropriately and safely. Management will be maintained within the primary care setting for as many patients as possible, thus avoiding unnecessary referrals to hospital services. Where referral to secondary care is required it will be within agreed protocols to a suitable specialist with appropriate urgency.

Patients can self-refer and will be sign-posted from GPs, pharmacists, A&E, Hospital Eye casualty telephone triage or non-accredited optometrists.

Using the skills of primary care optometrists to triage, manage and prioritise patients presenting with an eye condition, patient care will be improved by:

  • Reduction in unnecessary referrals to eye casualty clinics thus supporting secondary care to manage ophthalmology capacity

  • More cost-effective care

  • Speedier access to care

  • Care closer to home in a more convenient setting

  • Easier access for patients through self-referral

  • Retention of patients in primary care where possible

  • Reduction in antibiotic prescribing

MECs – current list of participating practices can be found in the MECS leaflet

MECS Triage Flow Chart 2.jpg

** As a reminder - please check if patient's GP is in Solihull, Sandwell and West Birmingham, Birmingham, Dudley, Walsall and Wolverhampton. You can see patients from the West Midlands but please be aware of their local referral protocols.**

The website www.eyecarewm.co.uk is very useful to determine which area the patient’s GP is registered under or you can find a list of GPs registered in Solihull CCG and surrounding areas here

Practitioners operating under the Solihull MECS scheme are reminded that recommendations for eye drops to be prescribed on the NHS must follow the BSSE Formulary, you can access the APC formulary at birminghamandsurroundsformulary.nhs.uk

Medicines are traffic lighted as

  • Green – can be initiated and prescribed by any prescriber

  • Amber – recommended or initiated by a specialist, but then suitable for prescribing by any prescriber (sometimes with guidance, such as shared care)

  • Red – for prescription by hospital only (i.e. not for prescription by GP)