What is an "appropriate" eye and eyesight test for the purposes of employers' duties towards display screen equipment users?

Under reg.5 of the Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations 1992 (SI 1992/2792), an employer is required to ensure that "an appropriate eye and eyesight test" is carried out on an employee who uses, or will use, display screen equipment as a significant part of his or her normal work, if the employee requests such a test.

An "appropriate eye and eyesight test" means a sight test, as defined in the Opticians Act 1989. The aim of such a test is to identify whether or not an individual has a sight defect, and to correct it, for example by prescribing glasses. The test will include examination of the eye to detect injury, disease or abnormality.

When carrying out the test, the optician or medical practitioner should take into account the employee's work environment and the nature of his or her display screen equipment use, with a view to assessing whether or not he or she requires glasses (or another type of corrective appliance) for display screen equipment work.

The test should be carried out by a registered ophthalmic optician, or a registered medical practitioner with suitable qualifications.