Freedom of Information Act 2000

Introduction

Under the Freedom of Information Act (FOI), anyone has a right to access information held by or on behalf of public authorities such as the NHS. All public authorities are required to have an Information Commissioners Office (ICO) approved publication scheme, designed to promote transparency and accountability on how they spend public money.

This is a guide to the information about our NHS services, routinely made available to the public by Vision Express.

Like all NHS contractors, since 1 January 2005, there has been a FOI obligation on opticians' and optometrists' to respond to requests about the NHS related information that it holds, and anyone now legally has the right to ask for access to that information.

You are also entitled to:

  • Request information about our NHS services under the NHS Openness Code 1995.
  • Request access to the personal data that we hold on you under the Data Protection Act 2018.

This guide will be reviewed at regular intervals, at least once a year and we’ll publish any changes we make to this guide or relevant information. Our policy is to be as open as possible but we may withhold certain information if we consider an exemption applies, including those exemptions that are legally allowed.

If you have any comments about the operation of the Publication Scheme, or how we have dealt with your requests relating to the scheme, please send this to us in writing:

By email: [email protected]

By post: Freedom of Information, Customer Services Department, Vision Express, Ruddington Fields Business Park, Mere Way, Ruddington, Nottingham, NG11 6NZ.

NHS information at Vision Express is held, retained and destroyed in line with our retention policies and 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. From 2005, individual Classes are subject to exemptions, the main reasons being the protection of commercial interests and personal information under the Data Protection Act, 2018.

All the information which we have made available is split up into Classes to make it easy for you to find what you want.

Class 1 - About us

Vision Express (UK) Limited and its’ Joint Venture partners are part of the GrandVision group of companies and are the operating companies for over 550 optical retail stores in the UK.

The following information can be found on our website www.visionexpress.com

•    List of stores, opening hours and contact details.
•    Details on our products and services.
•    Information about eye health, optical and ocular conditions, eye tests, glasses, and contact lenses.

Some of this information is also freely available in leaflets in all of our stores.

Vision Express is regulated, amongst other laws, by the Opticians Act, 1989 and the UK Data Protection Act, 2018.

For registration details, please contact :

Companies House at www.companieshouse.gov.uk Registration of a company operating in the United Kingdom.

Information Commissioners Officer – registration required as a processor of personal data as required by of the UK Data Protection Act, 2018.

General Optical Council – registration as a company providing optical services.

Class 2 - Our spend

This includes financial information relating to projected and actual income, expenditure, procurement, contracts and financial audit.

Also the total cost to the NHS and other public sector organisations to which we provide our services.

We will publish information in this class unless we consider it’s likely to cause a negative impact to the commercial interests of any persons or parties, including the NHS, or is exempt from being published.


Class 3 - Our priorities

This includes information on our business strategies and plans, performance indicators, audits, inspections and reviews. It also details our plans for the NHS and other public bodies and their income.

We will publish information in this class unless we consider it’s likely to cause a negative impact to the commercial interests of any persons or parties, including the NHS, or is exempt from being published.

Class 4 - Our decision making

This includes records of decisions made in the business affecting the services provided to the NHS or other public sector services.

We will publish information in this class unless we consider it’s likely to cause a negative impact to the commercial interests of any persons or parties, including the NHS, or is exempt from being published.

Class 5 - Our policies and procedures

Information on our current written protocols, policies and procedures for complying with laws impacting our business and for enabling us to deliver our services and responsibilities.

We’ve implemented policies and have controls in place for numerous areas including:

•    Data Protection including the Rights of data subject
•    Information Security
•    Complaints
•    Health and safety

The documents are classified as being for internal use by Vision Express and will not be made publicly available.

Class 6 - Lists and registers

Details of all opticians and registered optometrists registered in the UK are available from the General Optical Council:

•    Tel: 0207 580 3898
•    Website: www.optical.org
•    Company GOC Registration number CO-1881


Class 7 - Our services and charges

Vision Express provides optical services including eye examinations, dispensing, enhanced services and repairs.

Our products include a range of eye wear including glasses, sunglasses, contact lenses and related eye care products.

For every eye test performed on behalf of the NHS, Vision Express receives a fee from the NHS. Vision Express provides a free eye examination to eligible individuals, based on the NHS eligibility criteria. NHS vouchers can also be used against the purchase of prescription glasses or contact lenses.

For details of our current charges, contact your local store. You can book an eye test online, by phone or in store.

Our charges are as follows and will be reviewed regularly:

•    Information accessed from our website - free of charge.
•    Single hard copies - free of charge.
•    Multiple hard copies or archived copies will incur a charge for photocopying, retrieval and postage, but we’ll inform you of the cost and this will have to be paid in advance.

This document is the publication scheme relating to the business of Vision Express and its relationship with the NHS, created 19 February 2019.