Optometry: Paving The Way For Better Health

March 26, 2018

As a health care profession, optometry involves examining eyes and visual systems for abnormalities or defects. It also deals with the diagnosis and proper management of eye problems. The field of optometry traditionally began with the main focus of rectifying refractive error by using spectacles. Modern optometry has undergone an evolution over time with an academic curriculum that consists of additional and intensive training in diagnosing and managing eye disease.

Primary Eye Health Care Services

Optometrists are medical practitioners who offer primary eye care and comprehensive eye examinations for the purpose of detecting and treating a variety of eye disease and visual abnormalities.

  • Optometrists are regulated medical professionals whose scope of work may vary depending on where they are located.
  • Diseases or disorders that are detected outside the scope of optometry treatment are referred to other relevant health care professionals for suitable care, usually to ophthalmologists who handle tertiary surgical and medical care of the eyes.
  • Optometrists often work closely with various eye care professionals like opticians and ophthalmologists to provide efficient and quality care to the public.
  • Like with other medical professions, optometry education and certification is duly regulated.
  • Optometric professionals interact with the community, different health care professions and government agencies to deliver vision and eye care.

Scope

Optometrists are primary eye care givers who are experienced in eyeglass prescriptions and fitting contact lenses as well as the treatment and management of common eye conditions such as dry eye syndrome and glaucoma. Find out more about Dr Lee Optometry here.

  • Optometric physicians currently manage primary eye care by conducting routine and comprehensive eye exams, prescribing contact lens and refractive eyeglass prescriptions and managing several common eye conditions and diseases.
  • When patients need surgical management and tertiary care, optometrists usually refer and work closely with ophthalmology. Optometrists also assist with managing medical cases with specialties such as radiology, pediatrics, dermatology, rheumatology, neurology, emergency and internal medicine.
  • Optometrists are licensed to provide treatment for eye conditions with oral medications and topical medications. They may also be trained to carry out certain surgical procedures such as laser surgeries, ocular injections, removing bumps and lumps around the eyes and foreign body removal form the eyes.
  • The scope of medial practice varies is different regions and is regulated individually.

Key Considerations

Optometry is linked to the development of other vision care professions, imaging techniques, optical instruments, optical aids, optics and vision science.

  • Optometrists are expected to participate in ongoing education courses that enable them to stay updated and current on standards of care.
  • Doctors of Optometry areresponsible for examining diagnosing, treating and managing disorders, diseases and injuries that affect the visual system, eye and other associated structures along with identifying related systemic conditions.
  • Optometrists prescribe contact lenses, spectacle lenses, vision therapy and medications and perform surgical procedures.
  • Optometrists guide their patients on both non-surgical and surgical options for their visual needs in relation to their lifestyles and occupations.
  • An optometrist completes the required level of education.
  • Optometrists are classified as eye care professionals who are licensed by the state to diagnose and treat conditions of the visual system and eye

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