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ABDO National Resource Centre in Birmingham opens to first students

The Association of British Dispensing Opticians’ National Resource Centre opened its doors this weekend. The centre was visited by the ABDO Board yesterday, and today the first cohort of students sit their practical exams in ophthalmic dispensing at the new location in Birmingham.

Alicia Thompson, BSc(Hons) FBDO R (Hons) SLD SMC(Tech) Director of Professional Examinations says, “The ABDO National Resource Centre is without doubt among the very best of the optical training centres available in the UK today. Sourcing the most advanced technology we have brought together the best in ophthalmic instrumentation coupled with cutting edge conferencing facilities including the use of 'Clevertouch' presenting. ABDO is immensely proud of our latest innovation provided for UK optics.”

She continues, “Whilst created to enhance our students’ experience during their examinations by providing comfortable surroundings, this centre also provides ABDO membership with a world class meeting facility. When the centre is not being used by our members, ABDO is offering the UK optical market at large a great opportunity to benefit and share the amazing facilities we now have available by hiring out our centre from us.”

The ABDO NRC clinical facilities showcase the latest technology and a wide range of equipment for dispensing, refraction, contact lenses, screening, minor eye conditions services and glazing. A particular highlight is the 10 clinical bays equipped for refraction and contact lenses including one equipped with CCTV recording facilities. This enables the production of training material as well as the live streaming of any current actions happening in the consulting room to an audience of up to 235 delegates in other areas of the centre, viewing via a number of large TV screens. ABDO Examinations Support Officer Phil Hall FBDO CL has masterminded the implementation of many aspects of the facility and says, “The amount of sponsorship we have had for the ABDO NRC is tremendous. We are extremely appreciative of the profession-wide support from optical business, with support in terms of frames, lenses, contact lenses, equipment and instrument manufacturing.”

For general enquiries about the NRC from 15 June call 0121 752 7500. For bookings, which are available from 1 August, contact Phil Hall, phall@abdo.org.uk or on 07538 525 206