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    #31
    Originally posted by Loki View Post
    Everything I read here makes me think that to a lot of the US an 'optician' is what the UK would call an optical assistant. Are qualifications and registration/licenses not a hard requirement be considered an optician? Do you just have to work in an optical practice?

    The exhausting requirement to be an Optician in the US was described this past weekend in Dallas, as fogging a mirror! Another used often is having a pulse! Both accurate. We are the only developed nation with no requirement for education. Most can't find an axis is a given meridian if their lives depended on it! We can and are moving finally to a better place! I asked a question in a session on formal education. Some spoke loudly of their knowledge, and I asked a simple question. What is the power of the following lens at 45 degrees: -3.00- 100x180. If you don't know, you are not alone. Blank stares from most!

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      #32
      Originally posted by Fezz View Post
      I have to agree strongly with these fine folks.

      All licensing states should eliminate the need for an optician license/deregulate the trade. The cream will rise to the top.

      There was a time that I was GUNGHO on trying to elevate this trade--no longer. This field is filled with lazy apathetic dolts that could care less about bettering themselves and the trade. Let them suffer!
      I definitely agree that if you eliminate optician licenses you will see the cream rise to the top. I do worry about the next generation of opticians though. I can eventually see the field get to this:

      Click image for larger version

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      If you haven't seen the movie you probably should take some time out of your day to watch it. Some kind of silly humor but it is a commentary on the dumbing down of our society.

      I don't have any answers for how to fix this. Opticianry as a career choice is definitely going the way of the dinosaurs and that makes me sad. I can say I am very, very, thankful to be able to come to this board and learn from people much smarter than myself.

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        #33
        1/2 cyl power added to the sph power. Do I pass?:showoff:

        Originally posted by wmcdonald View Post
        The exhausting requirement to be an Optician in the US was described this past weekend in Dallas, as fogging a mirror! Another used often is having a pulse! Both accurate. We are the only developed nation with no requirement for education. Most can't find an axis is a given meridian if their lives depended on it! We can and are moving finally to a better place! I asked a question in a session on formal education. Some spoke loudly of their knowledge, and I asked a simple question. What is the power of the following lens at 45 degrees: -3.00- 100x180. If you don't know, you are not alone. Blank stares from most!

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          #34
          I'm impressed. I would hope any "professional" Optician would, but in that room blank stares!

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            #35
            Originally posted by Uilleann View Post
            I believe Barry is getting at the same angle I am, more or less - though more eloquently said. It's been decades, and all the oft vaunted licensed states still can't agree on any form of basic licensure requirement. It's more fractured than the unlicensed states, which - at the least - seem to use the ABO basic as some form of demonstration of entry level dispensing competence.

            Again, online has been the final nail in the coffin. The genie can't be stuffed back in it's lamp. The public "knows" they can get whatever they want online - completely regulation* free. In the mind of the public, disposable commodities, which is all glasses and contacts are today, it makes little sense to pay for "expensive" brick and mortar expertise. There is no license nor level of ABO that will change that perception. You'll have the [increasingly] rare optician who goes above and beyond, and will be sought out for their expertise. But those who maintain that practical skill set, still must market themselves either to an employer, or to the public in their area if they're an owner. With a spot of luck, they'll do ok.

            But it won't be due to any license, ABO rating, or such antiquated concepts in this field. While many of us wish it were a different reality we lived in, this is the current landscape we're in. *shrug*
            THIS is why we need to school opticians in skills the public wants…which is not contact lenses!

            I see the future for opticians, especially with large corporate entities patiently waiting for the passionate to give up, move on or die:

            And it’s called Mobile.

            B

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              #36
              So what qualifications are actually required to be licensed in the US? Here in the UK I am halfway through a three year degree to be able to call myself a Dispensing Optician.

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                #37
                There is no mandatory qualification in most states in the US. Usually a pulse, or fogging a mirror!

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                  #38
                  Originally posted by wmcdonald View Post
                  There is no mandatory qualification in most states in the US. Usually a pulse, or fogging a mirror!
                  I find that so strange. This course is a(n interesting) nightmare, and while some of it is stuff I will just never need, so much of it is intensive knowledge that I need every single day. The idea that somewhere will just turn out unqualified staff and let them just do whatever... its so weird to me.

                  I can understand the push to keep the licensing, at least then there is some accountability.

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                    #39


                    Online killed the state licensure

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                      #40
                      If it was easy enough to replace with online, then you may be correct. But what killed or is attempting to kill licensure is us. It takes the lofty requirement of a pulse to be an Optician in most states in this country. I know those who have fought against licensure, the truly enlightened among us, are proud!

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                        #41
                        The public at large truly doesn't care about a given dispenser's pride. *shrug* Additionally, it wasn't the interweb that was the downfall of licensure. It was licensure itself.

                        Read that again.

                        There was never any form of parity whatsoever between states in their licensure requirements. No national standard. No minimum educational, or practical standards established. Some states would grant a license with a basic ABO cert under your belt, and indeed a pulse. Others required wildly more education, time on the job, or apprentice work.

                        Why should the public care when the states, and the respective boards were - and remain - so utterly disorganized, and clearly unable to establish reasonable standards across state lines as practically all other medical licenses do? When the licensing boards wonder why they are dying off today, they only have to look in the mirror sadly.

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                          #42
                          While it’s widely been said a “pulse” is required to be an Optician, there is no said requirement on any books of unlicensed states. In fact, my last employer offered a considerable sum to my surviving family for my cadaver. ( He wanted to prop me up at a dispensing tables to show patients I was still “there”.)


                          Listen, you either think the public deserves to be advised and serviced by folks that have demonstrated at least basic competency in their craft, or you don’t. What do you think the public expects when they bypass online/econo places and come to you?…..

                          I dare everyone that reads this…Take a little survey of your own patients. Everybody has or runs across some you’ll feel comfortable asking….

                          “ What training or educational level is required to be an Optician/me? “…….I double dog dare you!

                          I already know the answer..There was a survey done, yes, years ago (Uil..lol..) that stated over 85% believe it took a 4 year degree, or minimum 2 year associate. I will bet you a shiny new PD stick it’s within 5% of 85% today. If you live in an unlicensed state ( even if you don’t), the public “thinks” they are dealing with an institutionally educated individual. Most all non-optical people you encounter think you’re a friggin’ doctor till you explain the difference. I will say, it’s nice to work in a profession where I’m the Wizard….till the curtain is pulled back…

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                            #43
                            But the public does want to know the individual they are dealing with has some credentials! You are exactly right, however. The problem lies in something similar to Master Commandant Perry said to Gen Harrison in the War of 1812, "I have seen the enemy, and he is us!" No consistency, no common curriculum, no general agreement on anything optical! But most here know I fought the good fight for far too long. I wanted this to be a better place. The study mentioned was conducted by NY City Technical College, and by a large margin, those surveyed thought the minimum required we held was a bachelor's degree. That didn't take hold around the country. States could never agree. SC was better than NC. NY better than New Jersey! And so on! My own personal research indicated that Opticians themselves saw a need for more education. They needed a way to get that done. We waited and wondered!

                            There is good news! I left sometime back and stop lecturing for several years, frustrated that we weren't changing, improving. I was invited to OAA Leadership last year in my home state, NC by the leadership team, and I went. I saw many longtime friends and enjoyed that very much. But something happened there that has encouraged me, and I want you to hear it. I met new, young Opticians (capital O!) Prior to the trip, young Cira Collins, from Oregon, proudly posted her recently completed Master in ophthalmic Optics, from the ABO, something I did back in 1975. She strolled up at the registration desk as Kaye and I were checking in and said hello. She then took us to meet some new leadership, starting associations across the country. Young, bright minds, most with educational credentials, and ready to go!

                            There is a new day, and a new dawn. Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Missouri, Indiana and others are up and running! There will soon be changes coming and I can't wait to see the thing take shape! Stay tuned, same time, same station! Good things coming.
                            Last edited by wmcdonald; 02-29-2024, 05:05 PM.

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