In Ontario, an optometrist’s role is as a primary eye care professional. We are governed by the College of Optometrists of Ontario and are issued a certificate of registration. We must practice according to the established standards of practice and have mandatory continuing education on an annual basis. We must meet these standards to maintain our license to practice.
The College of Optometrists of Ontario is the governing body for entering and practicing optometrists in this province. Their role is to protect the public’s interest and this is accomplished by several means. They evaluate and respond to clinical issues and concerns of their members, the media, the government and the public regarding optometric care. Their role also includes developing reports, recommendations and position statements, and reviewing, defining or clarifying clinical practice and public health issues relating to optometric care.
The optometric profession has long recognized its ethical responsibilities to patients, colleagues, other health care professionals, and the public. As licensed Doctor's of Optometry we are accountable to not only our patients, but to our regulatory body.
The mission of the profession of Optometry, according to the Canadian Association of Optometrists, "is to fulfill the vision and eye care needs of the public through clinical care, research and education, all of which enhance the quality of life. Doctors of Optometry are independent primary health care providers who specialize in the examination, diagnosis, treatment, management and prevention of diseases and disorders of the visual system, the eye and associated structures as well as the diagnosis of the ocular manifestations of systemic conditions."