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The Optometry Admission Test (O.A.T.) is a test used to determine applicants' qualification for admission to a school of optometry. All twenty colleges of optometry in the United States and the University of Waterloo in Canada use scores from the exam, in addition to work done at the undergraduate level of study, to decide whether to accept candidates. The test is administered by the American Dental Association (A.D.A.).

Optometry is the science or practice of testing visual acuity and prescribing corrective lenses “Optometry is a healthcare profession that is autonomous, educated, and regulated (licensed/registered), and optometrists are the primary healthcare practitioners of the eye and visual system who provide comprehensive eye and vision care, which includes refraction and dispensing, detection/diagnosis and management of disease in the eye, and the rehabilitation of conditions of the visual system.

Generally optometry has emerged from optics, as the education of opticians has expanded to include clinical subjects and as their scope of practice has been enlarged as a consequence. Some opticians have become optometrists.

Optometry and optics are linked professions and are in some countries of Europe considered to be one profession. In other countries they reflect separate areas of professional activity and are considered as separate professions.

Specialization in orthoptics and paediatric optometry gives competency to examine and manage children, young people and adults, with various visual problems. This includes competency to perform extended evaluation of visual function and management in the form of visual training in children, young people and adults with different motor-, neurological and perceptual anomalies of vision.

Therapeutic optometrists fulfill additional training and licensing requirements to qualify for their role. The general duties they share with all optometrists are explored here, as well as the additional duties they perform as a therapeutic optometrist.

Therapeutic optometrists may also prescribe medication to their patients. They may perform additional tasks such as removing items that are in a person's eye. They are also qualified to diagnose and treat patients with eye diseases. They may also pursue a license that enables them to treat patients with glaucoma. Other duties that all optometrists perform include teaching their patients about eye care. All optometrists are also qualified to identify other potential health issues that may affect their patients, such as diabetes. In addition to their medical duties optometrists may also be responsible for hiring and overseeing staff and promoting their services. Their specific responsibilities may vary if they have their own practice or are part of a medical team in a doctor's office or store setting.

There is a requirement for increased knowledge in orthoptics and paediatric optometry in private optometric and ophthalmic practice, and within public eye care services in hospital eye departments and at departments for people with special needs related to visual impairment. You could establish your own specialist private practice, where you may offer evaluation of visual function and visual training in cooperation with other health care professions, nursery/school, adult learning institutions and the local educational and psychological services to optimize each individual’s visual situation.

Specialization in general practice optometry gives competency to examine and be prepared to manage uncomplicated pathology of the anterior segment of the eye, and to communicate and cooperate with other professionals regarding the examination and follow up after treatment of uncomplicated ocular conditions related AMD, glaucoma and diabetic eye disease. This specialization also gives competency in visual ergonomics and occupational optometry.

There is a requirement for increased knowledge in general practice optometry in private practice, and within the public eye care services in hospital eye departments. You could establish your own specialist private practice, where you may offer evaluation of ocular health and visual function in cooperation with other health care professions by following up specific pathology of the posterior segment of the eye and uncomplicated pathology of the anterior segment of the eye. There also an increasing need for assessment of visual ergonomics and fitting and supply of optometric solutions for different professions to optimize the visual environment for people in employment with common and special needs.



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