One thing that I have learnt through working at OT over the last few years is that when it comes to the career of an optometrist, opportunities are aplenty.
A career as an optometrist offers a multitude of possible avenues for practitioners to explore once qualified – there is more to the life of an optometrist than being on the High Street.
From hospital and academic settings, to charity and industry, these are just a few options. There are also career routes within professional bodies, as well as Government-related areas, as I learnt talking to the AOP's Geoff Roberson about his career path last week (read more in the March OT).
A perhaps lesser known option is domiciliary optometry, an area that OT covers extensively in its February Patients-themed edition, landing through your letterboxes this weekend.
Speaking to four domiciliary optometrists, with various backgrounds, one thing that is clear is that it can be a very rewarding way to practice.
“Domiciliary patients may not have left the house for weeks, months or even years. When you go in and see someone and have a nice conversation, it can often be the highlight of their day. We can make a real difference,” explained Outside Clinic domiciliary optometrist, Nikesh Lad.
Harjinder Sunda, optometrist and founder of Eye Clinic at Home Ltd, added: “I love domiciliary optometry and find it very rewarding because you are really valued and appreciated by the people that you treat.”
However, domiciliary doesn’t have to be a sole route for optometrists. In fact, the service can bring added value to a practice-portfolio, as Leicestershire-based independent, Edmonds & Slatter, understands.
This week the independent relaunched its domiciliary service to highlight its home sight test service for patients who are unable to attend the practice. While the business has offered this service across its three practices for more than three decades, it feels that now is the right time to actively promote the offering.
In a market where being able to differentiate yourself from your competitors is key, be it through clinical skills or products, it is certainly worth giving this sort of service some thought.