§ Sir Bernard Braine
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services when he expects to undertake a general review of ophthalmic services; when this is likely to be concluded; and whether it will include consideration of all aspects of current monopoly practices.
§ Mr. Kenneth Clarke
A review of ophthalmic services will be starting in the near future and will be completed as soon as possible. The process of selecting a chairman and members is under way. Interested bodies have been consulted on proposed terms of reference and these are being revised in the light of the comments received.
Ministers are still considering the review of the Opticians Act 1958, including the effect of the optician's monopoly conferred by section 21 of that Act carried out by the Office of Fair Trading when producing its report "Opticians and Competition".