Appointments to the Optical Registration Board

The Minister for Health, Simon Harris, T.D., has appointed the following persons as members of the Optical Registration Board, following on from their election by the registrants of the profession, with effect from 11th February 2018 until 10th February 2021.

Mr. Paul Hersee

Mr. Hersee is a registered Dispensing Optician and a partner with Specsavers Opticians based in Arklow.  He has thirty-three years experience in the optical industry having qualified as a Dispensing Optician in 1989. After qualification he studied with the Association of British Dispensing Opticians as a practical examiner in optical dispensing.  He carries out practice visits in which he assesses the progress of students studying as dispensing opticians and the suitability of the practice to provide the required training. Mr. Hersee has advised on the dispensing modules being developed for the dispensing course provided by Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT). He also provides professional guidance on the European Standards that apply to the optical profession via his work with the NSAI. He is currently involved in training of support staff within Specsavers Opticians in Ireland and UK. He is the president of the Irish Association of Dispensing Opticians (IADO) having been a member of the IADO council and serving as Treasurer and Secretary for the Association. His academic qualifications include a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration.

Ms Derville Pitcher

Ms Pitcher is an optometrist for over 30 years and owns and manages two Dublin based practises. She has also worked in a hospital setting in Saudi Arabia. She has many years experience as an Executive Member of the Association of Optometrists, as an elected member of the Opticians Board and as the Irish representative at the European Council of Optometry and Optics to try to promote and develop this role.

Ms Pitcher has witnessed the developments and changes in the practice of the profession of optometry over the years with a greater scope of practice, improved education, access to diagnostic equipment and increasing role recognition within Government schemes. She believes in ensuring that Optometry and Dispensing Optician registrants are regulated to enhance public well-being by promoting the professions to continue developing towards a best practice, internationally recognised model of care.

Mr John Weldon

Mr Weldon who is an optometrist and serves on the CORU Fitness to Practice Health Committee. He is aware of the critical importance of standard setting in relation to fitness to practice and eligibility of those wishing to register as optometrists in Ireland. He considers that effective communication and direction within multi-disciplinary teams ensures appropriate regulation of health and social care professionals under the governing legislation.

He was recently awarded Fellowship of the Association of Optometrists Ireland for services to the Profession.