Optometrists perform eye examinations to determine the presence of vision problems and other eye conditions and disease. They treat or manage these problems by prescribing glasses, contact lenses, optical aids, vision therapy, medication (in the form of eye drops) or referral to an eye surgeon when required.

Duties & Tasks

Optometrists may perform the following tasks:

  • determine the nature and extent of vision and eye problems and disease by examining patients' eyes using specialised instruments, techniques and tests
  • correct vision defects by prescribing and dispensing glasses or contact lenses, special optical aids or vision therapy
  • examine patients for signs of eye disease and systemic conditions, including glaucoma, diabetes, high blood pressure and multiple sclerosis, and work with medical practitioners and eye surgeons to co-manage patients when required
  • manage some eye conditions by prescribing ocular therapeutic drugs
  • monitor patients' vision and ocular health with the use of imaging techniques such as digital retinal photography and computerised vision tests
  • conduct eye screening and testing for the purposes of determining occupational fitness or fitness to drive
  • undertake managerial, retail and administrative tasks.

Working Conditions

Most optometrists are in daily contact with members of the public on a one-on-one basis.

Personal Requirements

  • patient and caring manner
  • able to carry out accurate and precise work
  • good communication skills
  • enjoy helping people.
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