Clinical Director, Dasi – My Career Journey from South Africa to the UK

Optical Express Clinical Director, Dasi Raju, has been part of the Optical Express team for almost 20 years. Initially qualifying as an optometrist in South Africa, where she was born and raised, Dasi was the director of two of her own practices and also spent time as a university associate lecturer in optometry.  With a desire to expand her knowledge and develop her career, Dasi upskilled her degree and looked into opportunities to experience international markets in another part of the world, finally making a move to the UK, where she has been practicing optometry for the last 23 years.

As the level of education and optometry degree in the UK is very similar to that in South Africa, the United Kingdom was the perfect location for Dasi to experience the international markets she desired and to learn more about the way optometry is practiced in other parts of the world. She explains; “The markets are very international, I’ve met people from different nationalities, different cultures, very diverse backgrounds, and I find that really a very important part of my education, and a very important part of my development”

Dasi found entry into the UK optometry market to be a simple process and a smooth transaction. For any optometrist considering relocating to the United Kingdom you must firstly obtain the correct working visa before gaining registration with the General Optical Council. Dasi explains; “The first part of this is to acquire some sort of clinical experience for a few weeks within the United Kingdom that will allow the General Optical Council to allow registration. Once you have your registration, you can begin working as an optometrist in the United Kingdom.,”

Since joining Optical Express in 2002, Dasi is grateful for all the support she has received which has helped to make her career in the UK a success, commenting; “I’m very lucky that within Optical Express, I feel that I have an excellent support network and depending on what the nature is of the support that I need, I am very confident that I can reach out to almost anyone in my support network for the type of support.” At Optical Express we are committed to helping our optometrist reach their full potential through comprehensive and ongoing professional development. Our optometrists are supported by our industry leading surgeons, ophthalmologists and a dedicated clinical support team who are all on hand, not only to offer clinical advice, but also to help our optometrists to develop their skills and knowledge and progress their careers.

If you are thinking of relocating, or are looking for a new challenge, a move to the UK could be the perfect opportunity for you. One of the great benefits of a career in optometry is that it allows you to work anywhere in the world, so why not consider a move to the UK?

As the UK’s only complete eye care provider, at Optical Express we can provide our optometrists with a career pathway that is unique in the industry. Practicing real clinical diversity, you will be able to benefit from unrivalled opportunities for professional growth and develop your confidence as a clinician. It’s no wonder that we are the first choice for optometrists all over the UK.

Dasi’s advice for any optometrist considering relocating to the UK is to prepare yourself for an exciting, life changing adventure; “If you have the mind-set that you would like to learn, you would like to develop, you would like to experience new things, then we’d love to hear from you, you know, it’s equally exciting and rewarding to work within the refractive surgery sector and within Optical Express itself, so prepare yourself to learn, prepare yourself for a very exciting yet rewarding adventure.,”

For more information about current optometry career opportunities at Optical Express, please email and our recruitment specialists will take it from there.

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