Edinburgh optician just one of 77 to be awarded coveted honour

An Edinburgh optician has received the highest honour in his profession.

Friday, 30th April 2021, 12:16 pm
Michael O’Kane, 39, joins the exclusive club of 77 opticians across the UK who have achieved the coveted Fellowship of Optometry from the College of Optometrists.

Optometrist director at Specsavers stores in Morningside and Cameron Toll, Michael O’Kane, 39, joins the exclusive club of 77 opticians across the UK who have achieved the coveted Fellowship of Optometry from the College of Optometrists since its commencement in 2008.

He is among some of the youngest recipients to have been awarded the fellowship, putting him in the top 0.5% of optometrists in the UK.

The award recognises Mr O’Kane’s career achievements, including his dedication to caring for the community and promotion of eye care, which has seen him educate medical doctors on eye health as part of the faculty for FOCUS ophthalmology training. He also delivers professionally accredited educational talks for optometrists.

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The accolade also acknowledges his academic advancement and professional development, which has seen him gain a number of postgraduate qualifications, including independent prescribing qualifications and specialisms in paediatric eye care from the University of Ulster and medical retina from Moorfields.

Mr O’Kane said: “To be recognised as a Fellow of the College of Optometrists is such a privilege and I’m absolutely honoured to receive it. During my career, I’ve tried to push the boundaries and perceptions of optometry while guiding others through the industry. It’s hugely flattering to have your work recognised on a national scale and particularly at a time when we’re faced with a lot of unpleasant news in the world.”

The fellowship award is the latest achievement for Mr. O’Kane, who, at only 39, already has a full trophy cabinet. He has previously been named: UK and Ireland Optometrist of the Year 2018 at both the Opticians Awards and the NHS Scotland Health Awards; and has held the position of Vice Chair of Optometry Scotland, among others.

Giles Edmonds, Specsavers clinical services director, said: “Michael has been the driving force for clinical best practise, since he joined Specsavers 13 years ago. This impressive achievement, especially at a relatively young age, is a testament to the hard work and inspiring leadership he displays to both his team and a wider community every day.”

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