Practice Staff

What are an Optometrist and Dispensing Optician?

Are you thinking of a career in Optometry or Ophthalmic dispensing?

Optometrists and Dispensing Opticians are Health Care Professionals responsible for the visual health of their patients, working to maintain or improve the quality of their lives.

This can be demanding but also rewarding, requiring good communication skills. With the advancement of technological and clinical treatments the professions are continually extending their skill set.

Once qualified and registered, you can earn an attractive salary and work in a variety of settings including independent and corporate practice, hospitals, or academic research and teaching.


An Optometrist determines the health of the eye, assesses refractive error and prescribes, fits and adjusts spectacles or contact lenses where necessary.

Advice is given on visual problems and they are able to detect ocular diseases or abnormalities, referring the patient to a medical practitioner if necessary, or treating in the community where appropriate.

Once qualified, optometrists can undertake further training to specialise in other aspects of eye care.

Dispensing Optician

A Dispensing Optician advises on, fits and supplies the most appropriate spectacles taking into account each patient’s visual, lifestyle and vocational needs. When advising people about new spectacles, important assets include an interest in fashion and a background in science.

Career opportunities also include undertaking further training to fit contact lenses and to further develop business skills.