Careers in Ophthalmic Medical Technology
An ideal candidate, as an ophthalmic allied health professional, will possess a scientific attitude, sound judgment, a highly personable manner, excellent verbal and written communication skills in English, and the ability to successfully multitask. Generally, an ophthalmic medical technician works under the direct supervision of a licensed physician and/or surgeon who specializes in care and treatment of the eye—an ophthalmologist.
While employed, most graduates will be expected to perform these tasks:
- Take patient medical histories
- Assist the doctor in the examination and treatment of patients
- Assist the doctor in eye surgery
- Assist in fitting contact lenses
- Administer topical and oral medications
- Provide education for patients
- Perform diagnostic testing
Most ophthalmic medical technicians work in a private practice or a clinic. Generally, technicians work approximately 40 hours per week.
What skills will I use on the job?
In addition to working under a licensed physician who specializes in ophthalmology, you may perform several other tasks. Our program is designed to help you develop skills and knowledge in a wide variety of areas in ophthalmology: optics, ocular pharmacology, contact lens fitting, surgical assisting, instrument maintenance and care, refractometry, ocular pathology and ophthalmic ultrasound.
Who will hire me?
Excellent employment opportunities exist in the Northwest and throughout the country. Graduates may expect to find jobs in group practices, HMOs, private offices and university clinics. PCC’s research indicates that demand for such skills will increase in the future. Graduates may enjoy the flexibility of working part-time or full-time and the room to grow in a rewarding career.
How much can I earn?
Starting annual salaries in the Portland area range from approximately $30,000 to $36,000; most full-time positions include excellent benefit packages. Experienced and advanced technicians may expect annual salaries between $44,000 and $50,000.