OAC SURVEY - REFRACTION & OPTICIANRY Make Your Voice Count By Participating Before April 15 th, 2019.
The Opticians Association of Canada is committed to expanding its efforts to better serve opticians. We want to stay ahead of evolving trends and patterns and map-out where the opticianry profession is, and where it is going.
We would be grateful if you could help us to better understand the scope of the profession by answering some questions in our survey. It will only take 5-10 minutes to complete and you do not need to share your identity as part of this survey, which means your answers are anonymous.
DEMYSTIFYING LOW VISION By Zulfikar Kasmani, Optician
Patients with low vision are the most underserved members of our society. Researchers in Canada estimate that approximately one million Canadians have some form of vision impairment; that’s more than breast cancer, prostate cancer, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease combined.
We as ECP’s are responsible for this situation created for our patients. If the vision cannot be corrected with eyeglasses/contact lenses or any other surgical procedure, most of the time we don’t think ‘out of the box’ and advise patients towards next steps available, such as Low Vision Rehabilitation.
There is a six-minute video entitled “ There is Something Else You Can Do” produced by the American Academy of Ophthalmology which I recommend all of you watch. In this video, the Academy mandates ophthalmologists refer patients with visual acuities of less than 20/40 or scotomas, field loss or contrast loss, to vision rehabilitation services to lessen the impact of vision loss and
improve independence and quality of life. The Academy has made referral to vision rehabilitation for those who experience vision loss as a standard of care.
The World Health Organization has updated its classification of low vision, and now classifies distance vision impairment at visual acuity worse than 6/12 (20/40) and near vision impairment with acuity worse than N6 or M.08, with correction in both cases.
Taking cues from both these organizations, is it not time for opticians to jump on board and start helping patients with low vision? We work with optometrists and we need to educate them that we can help these patients by providing low vision services.
Low Vision is within our scope of practice, and like contact lenses, many opticians dispense soft lenses only. I encourage opticians to start with basic low vision devices. Helping low vision patients improve their independence and quality of life provides personal inner satisfaction. Moreover, when dealing with low vision patients, you come into contact with caregivers and their families; trust gained in this way, is the ultimate practice builder.
If you would like to start doing low vision in your dispensary, have questions on how it can be set up, or would like to learn more about low vision rehabilitation, contact the OAC and they will be happy to guide you.
This year, the Opticians Association of Canada will be running a live webcast on April 27 th & 28 th, from its national convention specially designed for the optical industry, Optical Summit. From the comfort of your home, experience the same high-quality learning experience in a convenient format.
Excellent speakers such as Bob Alexander, Kayla Ahlee, Trudi Charest, Dr Robert Kloepfer, and Charlie Saccarelli have already confirmed their presence
The Optical Group, in collaboration with the OAC, are very proud to announce a Business Enrichment Grant, for one Independent Optician and one student in their employ. This Business Enrichment Grant/Scholarship will be awarded to an Independent Optician who employs a student enrolling in the NAIT/OAC Optical Sciences Program. This Grant will cover the four (4) semester Eyeglasses Program, the two (2) semester Contact Lens Program, and associated tuition fees and text books for one student employed by the Optician. Specific details and application criteria will be announced soon. Read more...
HOW I BECAME AN OPTICIAN... A COMBINATION OF CIRCUMSTANCES
As I wavered in my decision about post-secondary education, I worked as a waitress. I soon realized my love for working in customer service; dealing with regular customers, making sure every one of them left the restaurant satisfied with their experience made me happy. I researched different courses available at community colleges and learned about and became interested in the Optician program.
I applied to the program, but had not saved enough money to cover my tuition fees. I had to postpone my application and was devastated! A few weeks after declining enrollment in the program, a customer I saw and served on a regular basis opened a path for me. Read more...
“ With myopia prevalence increasing worldwide and growing body of evidence demonstrating that its progression can be slowed, myopia control is becoming increasingly popular in clinical practice. The information regarding methods to control eye growth is constantly evolving. A solid knowledge of the latest findings will serve eyecare practitioners well, especially as parents become more aware of myopia control options via the internet.” Continue reading this article