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    OMD resident attacks ODs in blog—ODs respond

    Our sister publication, Ophthalmology Times, recently featured two blogs from Zack Oakey, MD, an ophthalmology resident at the University of California, Irvine, that created a buzz on both sides of the OD/MD aisle.

    In his first blog, Dr. Oakey defends optometrist-performed medical procedures and explains why he thinks not allowing such practices would hinder patients and create an ophthalmic monopoly.

    First blog: Devil’s advocate—OD-performed surgery dangerous, could be legal

    In his second blog, published two weeks later, Dr. Oakey explains that OD-performed medical procedures should not be legal. He says that after writing the first blog, he received reactions from both sides of the debate and now believes optometry’s attempts at expanded scope of practice are best described as “a wolf in sheep’s clothing.”

    Second blog: OD-performed surgery unacceptable, dangerous

    We asked some optometrists about what they thought about Dr. Oakey’s recent blogs. Here’s what they had to say.

    Next: Dr. Ernie Bowling responds 

    Ernie Bowling, OD, MS, FAAO
    Dr. Ernie Bowling is Chief Optometric Editor of Optometry Times. He received his Doctor of Optometry and Master of Science in ...
    Mohammad Rafieetary, OD, FAAO
    Dr. Mohammad Rafieetary is a consultative optometric physician at the Charles Retina Institute in Memphis. He is a fellow of the ...

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    • Anonymous
      This type of debate between optometry and ophthalmology is thoroughly antiquated. Thanks to the incredible advances in surgical ophthalmological care in the past 20-40 years, ophthalmologists are in the OR now more than ever and are no longer expected to be primary eye care providers. Optometry is filling that primary eye care role and doing a great job. As an optometrist, if a patient comes in for non-surgical care or treatment and they are under the impression that they should be seeing an ophthalmologist, I ask them: "Do you see a surgeon when you have a head cold?" No. You see your primary care provider, who guides your care and refers for secondary care if necessary. Optometrists are the primary care providers for the eye. And if there are public health needs that require optometry to expand its scope of practice, we are prepared to do what is necessary to meed those needs.
    • StevenNelson
      It would be a mistake to confuse the way things are and the way they PERCEIVE things. It's not an argument we and certainly one we'd prefer to avoid, but there are a few vocal representatives of ophthalmology that keep it alive.
    • Anonymous
      This type of debate between optometry and ophthalmology is thoroughly antiquated. Thanks to the incredible advances in surgical ophthalmological care in the past 20-40 years, ophthalmologists are in the OR now more than ever and are no longer expected to be primary eye care providers. Optometry is filling that primary eye care role and doing a great job. As an optometrist, if a patient comes in for non-surgical care or treatment and they are under the impression that they should be seeing an ophthalmologist, I ask them: "Do you see a surgeon when you have a head cold?" No. You see your primary care provider, who guides your care and refers for secondary care if necessary. Optometrists are the primary care providers for the eye. And if there are public health needs that require optometry to expand its scope of practice, we are prepared to do what is necessary to meed those needs.
    • Anonymous
      This type of debate between optometry and ophthalmology is thoroughly antiquated. Thanks to the incredible advances in surgical ophthalmological care in the past 20-40 years, ophthalmologists are in the OR now more than ever and are no longer expected to be primary eye care providers. Optometry is filling that primary eye care role and doing a great job. As an optometrist, if a patient comes in for non-surgical care or treatment and they are under the impression that they should be seeing an ophthalmologist, I ask them: "Do you see a surgeon when you have a head cold?" No. You see your primary care provider, who guides your care and refers for secondary care if necessary. Optometrists are the primary care providers for the eye. And if there are public health needs that require optometry to expand its scope of practice, we are prepared to do what is necessary to meed those needs.
    • Anonymous
      This type of debate between optometry and ophthalmology is thoroughly antiquated. Thanks to the incredible advances in surgical ophthalmological care in the past 20-40 years, ophthalmologists are in the OR now more than ever and are no longer expected to be primary eye care providers. Optometry is filling that primary eye care role and doing a great job. As an optometrist, if a patient comes in for non-surgical care or treatment and they are under the impression that they should be seeing an ophthalmologist, I ask them: "Do you see a surgeon when you have a head cold?" No. You see your primary care provider, who guides your care and refers for secondary care if necessary. Optometrists are the primary care providers for the eye. And if there are public health needs that require optometry to expand its scope of practice, we are prepared to do what is necessary to meed those needs.
    • Anonymous
      Thank you Dr Bowling and Dr Rafieetary for responding to this blog. Your answers are thoughtful and substantial against an unsubstantial, condescending opinion of a 1st year OMD. It's almost not worth a response, but your efforts are appreciated to defend optometrists. These procedures are in our scope of practice with proper training and education. No OD (or Dr of any specialty for that matter) would jump at the prospect of performing procedures on a patient without such additional training or licensing, properly put in place. This expansion of optometric care should be taken seriously of course, so perhaps "minimal training" is not the right verbage. Unfortunately, Dr. Oakey's article continues in an offensive and ignorant manner that needed to be corrected... but isn't this an old battle...
    • Anonymous
      see above

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