Role of an Optician

Opticians are highly skilled eye care professionals who undergo rigorous and extensive training to fulfill education and practice competencies in Opticianry. They design and dispense eyeglasses, contact lenses, low vision aids and prosthetic ocular devices for customers.

As with other health professions, candidates in Opticianry must pass specific certification and educational criteria to demonstrate that they are qualified for the profession and are not a risk to the public. The education requirements for Opticianry are based on determined learning outcomes as established by the College of Opticians in each individual province. The education and training for opticians is more in-depth and extensive than optometrists in areas where the two professions provide the same services to the public.

You can expect your Optician to follow the Code of Ethics as outlined by the College of Opticians in your province. Specifically this relates to you in the following ways:
Your Optician will...
· be honest and impartial in serving you their client
· use their knowledge and skill to improve your visual health and well-being
· protect the privacy of your records
· release your records on your consent to another health professional
· provide you with quality ophthalmic services
· ensure that your service is not interrupted in the Optician's absence

What to expect when you are in an Optician's dispensary
Make sure that you are receiving treatment from a Registered Optician - all Registered Opticians will display their current Registration Certificate in a prominent location. If you cannot see it; ask to be shown this important document and make sure that it is valid for the current year. 

While the style of the eyeglass frames is very important to you, the Optician's recommendation on the type of lenses is what will determine your satisfaction with your eyewear.

To make sure you see well and easily, all ophthalmic lenses require precise measurements to be taken from your face and eyes, and the results must be accurately transferred to the eyewear. This is not a simple task; should your Registered Optician make a mistake as little as 1 millimetre you may not be able to use your new eyewear.

Make sure that you ask about lens types; there are hundreds of modern lenses types for different visual needs. There are also many lens coatings that will enhance your vision.

Some lenses are specifically made for people of different ages, and even some that are made to allow for a person's posture and even eye and head movement.
Remember that your Registered Optician is highly trained to provide you with choices from the simplest aspect of corrective lenses to the most complicated. While style is important, don't confuse style with expert lens advice.

If you have a complaint about an experience or service from an optician, you can notify the College of Opticians in that province, who will investigate the situation on your behalf, under certain criteria.



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