Become Optometrist

Job Description: Optometrist

Optometrists are healthcare professionals who specialize in eye health and primary vision care. Optometrists are primarily known for performing eye examinations and prescribing lenses for glasses and contact lenses. They perform careful examination and meet with patients to determine their unique vision care needs and design custom eyewear and vision care treatment plans. They attend specialized multi-year optometry schools, but do not have medical degrees.

5 Requirements To Be An Optometrist

  1. A minimum of three years of undergraduate education (sciences preferred)
  2. Complete a 3-5 program in optometry at an accredited optometry school
  3. Pass the exam by the Optometry Examining Board of Canada
  4. Gain admission to a provincial licencing board (i.e. the College of Optometrists of Ontario)
  5. Have both strong technical knowledge and personal skills to best serve patients

What Does An Optometrist Do ?

An Optometrist provides specialized primary vision care. They examine patients experiencing symptoms such as blurred vision, trouble focusing, far or near sightedness and other related issues. They use specialized equipment such as ophthalmoscopes and biomicroscopes to carefully look at a patient's eyes, including the cornea and pupil, to determine the cause. An optometrist then prescribes lenses for glasses and contacts lenses in order to correct the problem and allow a patient to see clearly. The typical duties of an Optometrist includes:

  • Meet with patients experience vision issues
  • Exam a patient's eyes to identify any problems
  • Prescribe lenses for glasses and contacts
  • Re-exam existing patients to determine if a new prescription is needed
  • Educate a patient on proper vision care techniques
  • Keep detailed records as required by law
  • Process patient insurance claims and related admin tasks
  • Refer patients to other specialists if necessary

How To Become An Optometrist

Optometrists are healthcare professionals, and there are serious academic and training requirements for people who wish to enter the profession. Aspiring optometrists must complete at least 3 years of undergraduate education with a science-related major, before entering a 3-5 program at an accredited optometry school. Once they successfully graduate from the program, they must pass an examination with the Optometry Examining Board of Canada to become accredited. Finally, they must join their provincial or territorial licencing board such as the College of Optometrists of Ontario and abide by all regulations.

Sectors Recruiting For An Optometrist

Optometrists are predominantly recruited by the healthcare sector, including both public and private practices. Although they are not licensed medical doctors, they can work in conjunction with MDs in public healthcare facilities and private clinics to provide optometric vision care to patients.

Career Outlook For An Optometrist

The long-term employment outlook for optometrists is considered good across the country. As recently as 2018, the unemployment rate for professional optometrists was a very low 0.4% at the national level. There is actually a labour shortage predicted for the next decade, with there being a higher demand for optometrists than there are qualified professionals.

Where Does An Optometrist Work

Optometrists primarily work in optometry and vision care clinics. These are typically private clinics and offices, although they can also work in shared healthcare facilities with relation vision care experts and other healthcare providers.

Related Job Titles

According to the CNP code (national classification of occupations), here are additional titles for optometrists:

  • Eye care specialist
  • Vision care specialist
  • Eye care expert
  • Vision care specialist
  • Visual impairment rehabilitation specialist

Companies Recruiting For Optometrist

Optometrist Salaries

To get an idea of ​​salaries in Canada for a Optometrist, visit our Jobillico salary tool.

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