An ophthalmic technician is an allied healthcare professional, who supports ophthalmologists by collecting data and administering treatment ordered by an ophthalmologist. These specialists are qualified to take medical histories, make anatomic and functional ocular measurements, administer diagnostic tests, use ophthalmic instruments, test eye function, and administer ophthalmic medications. They also teach patients about the use of contact lenses.
So, if you are interested in starting a career in the field of eye care, you might want to start as an ophthalmic technician. Let us have a step-by-step look at the major responsibilities of an ophthalmic technician and see if this is really right for you.
Obtaining a complete medical history from each client before conducting an eye examination.
Screening patients and recording medical conditions or any kind of medical supplements that they may be taking.
Administering the tests for color vision, pupil dilation, and intraocular pressure.
Diagnosing and performing tests that help ophthalmologists correctly evaluate visual tracking and central and peripheral vision.
Booking appointments, ordering ophthalmic supplies, as well as contacting patients for follow-up examinations.
Evaluating contact lenses to make sure that they fit properly; instructing the patients on how to use and take care of them.
Taking eye measurements to help an ophthalmologist prescribe the correct sized contact lenses. Carrying an array of administrative as well as related maintenance duties.
Maintaining various surgical and ophthalmic instruments.
Attending to walk-in patients and emergencies, and determining which physician they should see.
After completion of high school, one is required to complete a minimum two years of college before getting started in an ophthalmic training program. Generally, training programs of 6 months or 1 year are required to prepare you to become a fully trained ophthalmic assistant. The additional two years of study has to be done in order to qualify as a professional ophthalmic technician. These training programs could vary in length and many of them involve common subjects like anatomy, ophthalmic surgical procedures, ocular motility, the study of various eye diseases, and more.
After successfully completing training from a recognized institution, one is eligible to take the national certifying examination. Obtaining certification as an ophthalmic technician is voluntary. Ophthalmic technicians can also qualify for nationally certified exams that are offered by the American Orthotics Council. In order to renew the certification, the candidate must continue his/her study or education for every three years.
Working as an ophthalmic technician is not a bad idea since there is a lot of growth in this career. As the population grows, the aging population also increases. In addition, the demand for ophthalmic technician job keeps increasing steadily because there are various technical advancements in the field of vision care. As an ophthalmic technician, one can expect to work at an ophthalmologist’s clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, and other vision centers.