Optometry and Optometrist services are not only provided in hospitals but also in private practices. The scope and responsibility of an optometrist have evolved dramatically over the past couple of decades, making it an independent primary health care process. Optometric services are provided by state-licensed optometrists whose primary responsibility is to diagnose and treat disorders in one’s visual system. In addition to that, they also treat issues in all associated structures of the eyes as well as any other medical or systemic conditions related to it.
The optometrists work closely with different health care professionals to ensure the total health of the patient. These professionals include:
- Family practitioners
- Ophthalmologists, and more.
Over the years, Optometrist services have become more concurrent and interprofessional consultation services. This helps the optometrists to meet any needs of the patients regarding eye and vision care doing it a broader service. This includes some intricate areas like:
- offering solution for Contact lenses
- Vision rehabilitation and
- Treatment of Low vision.
Apart from that, the responsibilities of an optometrist also include providing both post and preoperative eye care, the use of pharmaceuticals in treating different eye diseases, and emergency eye care services. With so many optometrists out there providing nearly 70% of primary eye and vision cares services, it is now an accessible and cost-effective service facility.
The Range of Services
The range of Optometrist services is diverse and wide. They treat eye and vision disorders and even prescribe medicines as well as optical aids as required by a patient. The range of eye-related services provided by an optometrist include:
- Treating cataract and glaucoma
- Diagnosing health issues such as diabetes and thyroid that results in eye issues
- Examining vision disorders and prescribe glasses or contact lenses
- Analyzing and treating focusing disorders and eye coordination and
- Caring the partially sighted patients.
Optometrists of the former times were also known to provide therapeutic drugs as well to treat a wide range of eye conditions. They also offer advice to patients regarding:
- Occupational eye safety
- Lighting and vision requirements
- Aftercare while using contact lens
- General eye protection
- Fashionable spectacle frames
- Appropriate materials and coatings of the spectacle lens
- Learning disabilities due to vision issues and
- Sports vision.
Consultation is an essential aspect of Optometrist services during which the optometrists determine whether you need a regular eye examination or more advanced ones. Apart from screening your eyes for common diseases, they will also talk to develop the case history for any eye problems and abnormalities. These issues include myopia, hypermetropia, and presbyopia, or astigmatism.
Setting at Which Services Are Provided
As said earlier, Optometrist services can be provided in different settings. In a clinic, the services provided by an optometrist include:
- Visual testing for acuity and refractive errors
- Prescribing optical aids to correct vision
- Screening for eye diseases using an ophthalmoscope
- Prescribing drugs
- We are rectifying the abnormal shape of the cornea.
Optometrists who work in hospitals have a vast responsibility and provide services that include:
- Providing primary eye care to the outpatients
- Providing low vision care
- Providing binocular vision care
- They are reviewing and counseling patients based on their case history.
To provide complete eye care and assessment program, the optometrists working in hospitals also work with different medical specialists. For example, a pediatric ophthalmologist addresses issues like amblyopia in children. They also take part in research and training, especially for disorders in the eye due to neurological imperfections. They also teach and train new professionals.
Depending on the type of Optometrist services provided, an optometrist can be categorized differently, such as Academic and Occupational Optometrists, Community Optometrists, and optometrists involved in research surveys of public vision health. Therefore, optometrists play a major role in today’s medical field.