What is an Ophthalmic Assistant?
Ophthalmic Assistants provide vision care under the supervision of a licensed ophthalmologist. They assist with taking patient histories, performing diagnostic tests and procedures, patient scheduling and exam room preparation.
Types of Work Environments
- Medical equipment and supplies manufacturing laboratories
- Health and personal care stores
- Ophthalmologists' and optometrists' offices
Students can choose to pursue their training at the diploma, certificate, or associate-degree level. Training can be obtained through academic training in an accredited program, distance learning programs and on-the-job training. With additional training and experience, assistants may progress to the level of ophthalmic technician or technologist. Certification is offered through Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology (JCAHPO), and is available at three different levels: assistant (COA), technician (COT), and technologist (COMT). Certification is recommended, but not mandatory in Ohio.
According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the median salary for an ophthalmic laboratory technician is approximately $27,970 per year.
Professional Organizations and Resources
- The Association of Technical Personnel in Ophthalmology
- The Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology
- Discover Eye Careers