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Careers Related to Optometry

Dispensing Optician (DO)

Dispensing opticians generally work in private optical practices. They advise on, fit and supply spectacles, taking in to account the specific needs of the patient.

It is not uncommon for DOs to be responsible for practice management and marketing within a practice.

Dispensing opticians are also able to undertake further specialist training to dispense low vision aids or become contact lens opticians (CLO) and hence fit contact lenses.

Visit the Association of British Dispensing Opticians (ABDO) (external link) for further information.


Ophthalmologists are eye doctors who specialise in managing and treating eye conditions, generally through surgical intervention or the prescribing of medication.

They tend to work for the NHS, based in hospital eye departments but may also undertake private work.

To become an ophthalmologist, you must first qualify as a medical doctor. Visit the Royal College of Ophthalmologists (external link) for further information.

Ophthalmic Medical Practitioners (OMP)

OMPs are medical doctors with specialist eye training who work in a similar manner to optometrists in an optical practice. They examine eyes, diagnose abnormalities and prescribe suitable corrective lenses.


Orthoptists are primarily involved in the diagnosis and treatment of ocular motility problems and other vision problems such as lazy eye.

They tend to work in hospitals alongside ophthalmologists and optometrists. They are also the primary providers of childhood vision screening.

For further information, visit the British Orthoptic Society (external link).

Ophthalmic optician (OO)

Optometrists used to be called ophthalmic opticians.