The procedures they are asking to be able to do are safe, taught in optometry schools and are currently being done by optometrists in other states.
I was hoping this thread wouldn't pop up on TD this week. Now, I have to get involved.
I'm guessing you're an optometrist?? If not, you're certainly well informed about the issues.
However, the procedures they're asking for include many surgeries on the surface of the eye, and are not taught in optometry school. Some of them have to be done in an operating room (pterygium).
The biggest issue for me is that the board of optometry will be given the right to regulate optometric scope of practice if this passes. They won't be bound the the state board of medical examiners even though they'll be performing medical procedures.
It's really quite simple. There's a way for you to perform these procedures...go to med school, train in ophthalmology and go crazy.
In fact, an optometrist cannot currently drain a conjunctival cyst (a simple procedure that involves poking a hole in a fluid filled tissue using a high guage needle)
Here's exhibit A of why this shouldn't pass. The reason optometrists shouldn't be allowed to do these things isn't because they don't have the technical ability to do them (although some may not, but we don't know because they've never been supervised); it's because knowing when to perform surgery and when not to is more important than actually doing the procedure. Conjunctival cysts have to be excised, or they recur. Sticking a needle in one is a temporary fix that really does no long term good.
Medicine doesn't cry foul when dentists want to pull teeth or podiatrists remove an ingrown toenail. These aren't medical doctors either.
Dentists and podiatrists have something optometrists don't...supervised training.
This post was edited on 4/23 at 5:30 pm