When ophthalmic medical technicians or technologists ask to look you in the eye, they really mean it. These professionals assist ophthalmologists— or eye doctors— to provide eye care to patients. Ophthalmic medical technicians and technologists administer eye exams, dispense eye medications, and instruct patients in the care and use of corrective lenses. They take measurements of the eye with highly specialized equipment. Technologists also train and supervise technicians and assistants, take diagnostic images of patients’ eyes, and may assist with minor surgical procedures. Technicians may measure a patient’s current lenses for accuracy. Working with eyes is delicate work. It takes attention to detail and dexterity. Interpersonal skills are also important, whether comforting an anxious patient or clarifying specifications for lenses. Generally these skilled professionals work full time. Both ophthalmic medical technicians and technologists typically earn an ophthalmic technician certificate, earned in 1-2 years at a community college or professional school, then obtain a certification. When these technicians and technologists see eye to eye with their patients, better vision is in sight.
What they do:
Assist ophthalmologists by performing ophthalmic clinical functions and ophthalmic photography. Provide instruction and supervision to other ophthalmic personnel. Assist with minor surgical procedures, applying aseptic techniques and preparing instruments. May perform eye exams, administer eye medications, and instruct patients in care and use of corrective lenses.
On the job, you would:
Conduct tonometry or tonography tests to measure intraocular pressure.
Measure visual acuity, including near, distance, pinhole, or dynamic visual acuity, using appropriate tests.
Collect ophthalmic measurements or other diagnostic information, using ultrasound equipment, such as A-scan ultrasound biometry or B-scan ultrasonography equipment.
medicine and dentistry
Arts and Humanities
Math and Science
arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
talking to others
looking for ways to help people
understanding people's reactions
listen and understand what people say
communicate by speaking
Hand and Finger Use
put together small parts with your fingers
keep your arm or hand steady
Ideas and Logic
notice when problems happen
make general rules or come up with answers from lots of detailed information
People interested in this work like activities that include data, detail, and regular routines.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
Concern for Others
You might use software like this on the job:
Electronic mail software
Internet browser software
Web browser software
certificate after high school or associate's degree usually needed
Get started on your career:
New job opportunities are very likely in the future.
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