Doctors of optometry are the primary care doctors of the eye and the frontline protectors of vision—our most valued sense. As primary-care providers, doctors of optometry are educated, just as other physicians are, in general health and systemic disease. Optometrists are often the first to detect critical health issues—from diabetes to hypertension, from stroke to cancer—and refer their patients for timely treatment. Optometrists therefore enjoy the dual satisfaction of having the specialized knowledge to manage their patients’ eye health as well as the medical education to protect their overall wellness.
Optometrists practice in various kinds of situations and with different types of employers: individual private practice, partnership or group practice, retail/optical settings, optometric/ophthalmologic professional settings, military/public health optometrists, interdisciplinary care (hospital-based or clinic setting), academic/research, corporate/industrial, and as consultants.