Keep an eye on opportunities

By Ranjan K Baruah

Optometry is a healthcare profession that involves examining the eyes and applicable visual systems for defects or abnormalities as well as the medical diagnosis and management of eye disease. Traditionally, the field of optometry began with the primary focus of correcting refractive error through the use of spectacles. Modern day optometry, however, has evolved through time so that the educational curriculum includes intensive medical training in the diagnosis and management of ocular diseases. In most of the countries, the profession is established and regulated.
Optometrists are healthcare professionals who provide primary eye care through comprehensive eye examinations to detect and treat various visual abnormalities and eye diseases. Being a regulated profession, an optometrist’s scope of practice may differ depending on the location. Thus, disorders or diseases detected outside the treatment scope of optometry (i.e those requiring certain surgical interventions) are referred out to relevant medical professionals for proper care, more commonly to ophthalmologists who are physicians specialising in tertiary medical and surgical care of the eye.
Optometrists typically work closely together with other eye care professionals such as ophthalmologists and opticians to deliver quality and efficient eye care to the general public. The term optometry is derived from the Greek word ‘optos’ which means eye or vision and ‘metria’ which means measurement.
World Council of Optometry (WCO) has defined optometrists as: Primary healthcare practitioners of the eye and vision system who can successfully manage the leading cause of vision impairment (i.e. refractive error) and can also help alleviate the burden of other causes of blindness through diagnosis, referral and co-management. One may join the course after completing senior secondary in science steam. There are governments and private institutes offering the courses and the career options can be in government as well as in private sectors.
All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi offers BSc (Hons) in Ophthalmic Technology, Optician and Refractionist Course; Tripura Institute of Paramedical Sciences, Agartala offers Bachelor of Optometry and Vision Science (BOPTM), Regional Institute of Paramedical and Nursing Science based in Aizawl offers B.Sc (Optometry & Ophthalmic Techniques) under the Mizoram University; Srimanta Sankaradeva University of Health Sciences, Guwahati offers Bachelor of Science (B.Sc) in Optometry. There are many other institutes offering the course all over India. Apart from qualification aspirants must have employability skills to excel in their career and professional life. One must remember that mere qualification is not enough to be employed. One must make a good career plan once they take admission in optometry to be successful in life.

Updates:

L’Oréal India for Young Women in Science Scholarships: L’Oréal India invites applications from young women who have passed Class XII in 2019 and wish to pursue higher education in science. The scholarships will be granted to promising young women who are economically disadvantaged. Selected Women scholars will receive financial aid to cover college fees for graduation studies in any scientific field (Pure Sciences/Applied Sciences/Engineering/Medical, etc) at a recognised college or university in India. The scholarships are
being offered by L’Oréal India with an objective to support and encourage young women for pursuing higher education in science stream. The programme was instituted in 2003 and it has consistently helped young women to pursue scientific studies. Aspirants may apply before July 1.

(Ranjan K Baruah is a career mentor, skill trainer and also motivational speaker and can be contacted at 8473943734 or bkranjan@gmail.com for any queries)

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