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Just what we need... another OD school

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hrdwrknXsoldier

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I don't understand why people question the opening of another school.

With a majority of schools having smaller class sizes, the boomer Optometrists reaching retirement age, the overall population growth, and the massive increase of women in the optometry field; there simply are not enough providers.

The comment on women in the proffession was not meant to be anything but statistically supported effect in the decrease of provider availability. As a new poster here I don't want to start off on the wrong foot. I assure you I have no issue with female providers or competition in the industry. :D
 

Farmacist2011

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I thought there was a pretty good shortage of optometrists in the USA.
 

KHE

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I don't understand why people question the opening of another school.

With a majority of schools having smaller class sizes, the boomer Optometrists reaching retirement age, the overall population growth, and the massive increase of women in the optometry field; there simply are not enough providers.

BWWAAAAA!! HA! HAHA HAHAHAHAHA HAHA HAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!! Oh man, THAT was a good one. Ha ha. Hee hee hee *wheeze* *snort*

Farmacist2011 said:
I thought there was a pretty good shortage of optometrists in the USA.

HAHAHA HA!! ANOTHER ONE!! HEE HEEE HEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!! Oh my God, STOP! My stomach!! HA HAHAHAHAHAAAAAA.
 

blazenmadison

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I don't understand why people question the opening of another school.

With a majority of schools having smaller class sizes, the boomer Optometrists reaching retirement age, the overall population growth, and the massive increase of women in the optometry field; there simply are not enough providers.

That's what I thought 6 years ago. Oh how things change once you graduate... I was a naive student myself. :)

Unfortunately, optometrists are not retiring at a rate fast enough to accommodate the new number of graduates. Partly because of the economy has drained a lot of senior OD retirement funds. Also...ODs can refract till they're 80yo and they tend to die in their exam lane. :)

I did fill-in work at the local Walmart the other day...and we saw THREE patients the entire 10hr day. The leasing doctor lost money!! And I live in a pretty unsaturated OD semi-rural area.

Call around any town and see when the next available appointment for a general eye exam is. You will be able to be seen the same day! Do that with a dentist or general practitioner... and it might take you a while to be seen.
 

hrdwrknXsoldier

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That's what I thought 6 years ago. Oh how things change once you graduate... I was a naive student myself. :)

Unfortunately, optometrists are not retiring at a rate fast enough to accommodate the new number of graduates. Partly because of the economy has drained a lot of senior OD retirement funds. Also...ODs can refract till they're 80yo and they tend to die in their exam lane. :)

I did fill-in work at the local Walmart the other day...and we saw THREE patients the entire 10hr day. The leasing doctor lost money!! And I live in a pretty unsaturated OD semi-rural area.

Call around any town and see when the next available appointment for a general eye exam is. You will be able to be seen the same day! Do that with a dentist or general practitioner... and it might take you a while to be seen.

I guess I look at the market differently because of 8 years experience in many different aspects of the industry. I plan on working for the Fed on some level. It could be military, VA, Indian Health, Health and Human Services, or the Prison System. I just know i don't want to deal with insurance companies.

If an OD complains about not finding a position, they are likely not finding a position they WANT. While I do not believe anybody should "settle", there are many people who just refuse to move for work.

I do believe AOA needs to do a better job selling the bennifits of annual eye exams to the general public as a whole. It worked for dentists and their 6 month check up. People neglect their eyes too often. There is also a definate need to have a public informed on what an optometrist can do for them. Many patients have been conned into believing they must see an opthamologist for their routine care. Sadly they are usually taken care of by a technician instead of the doctor.

I am facinated with the MBA partnership degree program being offered at Pacific to students now. Not every optometrist is trained well enough to run a business.
 

Farmacist2011

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There's hardly any OD schools. I live in NY and I believe there is only SUNY. How could that saturate NY?
 

KHE

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There's hardly any OD schools. I live in NY and I believe there is only SUNY. How could that saturate NY?

NEWENCO and PCO (or whatever it's called now) all contribute to this problem. Couple that with the fact that many east coast students who can't gain admission to east coast schools, or who wish to try a new adventure by going somewhere else will commonly return to that area.
 

NYCBlues

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That's what I thought 6 years ago. Oh how things change once you graduate... I was a naive student myself. :)

Unfortunately, optometrists are not retiring at a rate fast enough to accommodate the new number of graduates. Partly because of the economy has drained a lot of senior OD retirement funds. Also...ODs can refract till they're 80yo and they tend to die in their exam lane. :)

I did fill-in work at the local Walmart the other day...and we saw THREE patients the entire 10hr day. The leasing doctor lost money!! And I live in a pretty unsaturated OD semi-rural area.

Call around any town and see when the next available appointment for a general eye exam is. You will be able to be seen the same day! Do that with a dentist or general practitioner... and it might take you a while to be seen.


AMEN sista (or brother)!:)

I work at three different locations and there are many many days where I either spend hrs surfing the net till i am bored outta my mind or stare at the four walls day dreaming or thinking about what i will be making for dinner. I feel bad for the leasing doc or private practice doc that they still have to pay me for sitting there all day doing nothing. They sure are losing money since no income is coming in.

I am a 2009 graduate with 200K in debt. Reality will hit you hard once you graduate.
 

Optogal

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I feel bad for the leasing doc or private practice doc that they still have to pay me for sitting there all day doing nothing.

The docs actually guarantee you a minimum?
 

caitsiex

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My boss told me about another school opening in Boston, too. This is getting out of hand.
 

Ryan_eyeball

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My boss told me about another school opening in Boston, too. This is getting out of hand.

If you are Pre-optometry reading this thread are you encouraged? 200k in debt to see three patients a day? Almost all OD's advertise for saturday hours. Will treat medical conditions for free to keep the patient for eye purchases. Davis Vision, Eyemed, Avesis, Spectera, etc have not raised reimbursements any (maybe 1-3% overall, not per year) in 9 years that I have been around.

Most OD's have no benefits..medical, dental, disability, life, paid time off, vacation, retirement program other than what you provide for yourself.

If you go into optometry, go the Indian Health, VA route, or Military.
 
Members don't see this ad :)

Farmacist2011

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If you are Pre-optometry reading this thread are you encouraged? 200k in debt to see three patients a day? Almost all OD's advertise for saturday hours. Will treat medical conditions for free to keep the patient for eye purchases. Davis Vision, Eyemed, Avesis, Spectera, etc have not raised reimbursements any (maybe 1-3% overall, not per year) in 9 years that I have been around.

Most OD's have no benefits..medical, dental, disability, life, paid time off, vacation, retirement program other than what you provide for yourself.

If you go into optometry, go the Indian Health, VA route, or Military.

That sounds very depressing!
 

thecgrblue

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I am facinated with the MBA partnership degree program being offered at Pacific to students now. Not every optometrist is trained well enough to run a business.

Can you give a link to info on this? Either it is horribly advertised or you are mistaken.
 

NYCBlues

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Yep many times i get reimbursed only $40/pt by Eyemed after having performed a thorough comprehensive eye exam (DFE included) as well as treating various medical eye conditions (ALL FOR FREE). We were trained heavily in ocular disease so i am afraid if i don't use them i'll lose them.

I am trying to get on medical panels so can get paid for some of my services, but so far Aetna has stopped accepting OD as providers in my area.
It is indeed very depressing. You'll either be providing free medical eye care or refer them out.
 

KHE

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AMEN sista (or brother)!:)

I work at three different locations and there are many many days where I either spend hrs surfing the net till i am bored outta my mind or stare at the four walls day dreaming or thinking about what i will be making for dinner. I feel bad for the leasing doc or private practice doc that they still have to pay me for sitting there all day doing nothing. They sure are losing money since no income is coming in.

I am a 2009 graduate with 200K in debt. Reality will hit you hard once you graduate.

What, if anything are you doing yourself to try to increase patient flow in that office? What are your long term plans in that office?
 

Farmacist2011

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With the economy slowly getting better and the baby boomers reaching retirement and more people getting insurance under Obama won't optometry see a golden age soon? I think it's just rough right now because of the recession.

O BTW I had a terrible expeirence at America's Best last week. On their website (and all over my tv screen) they said 2 pairs of "COMPLETE" glasses for 70 bucks, but then said it only covers the frames AFTER I GOT THERE and finished my exam. Well why didn't they say 2 frames plus exam for 70? Does "complete" not mislead people into thinking the LENSES are included. Then she started on the top of the list for lenses and they were like 200 more bucks. I immediately went toward the bottom of the lenses list and she said they wouldn't fit in the frames I picked out so I had to add another 130 for the middle ones!

Oh and before my exam she kept trying to sell me a 15 dollar whatever and scared me into thinking there could be cancer in my eye and only this 15 dollar thing checks for it- exam wouldn;t pick it up. I had to say "NO" 3 times! She used the word "cancer" the third time. So Desperate.

Oh and my exam wasn't that great either. I really think their machine was low quality. And when they had me take my contacts out and put them back in later there was no sink for me to use, just a mirror. And the whole place just seemed dirty and uncared for and very ghetto. Also she wanted me to add all this **** to my lenses for more and more money. I felt as if I was bent over the whole time!

I go to a very nice private practice, but I use up all my insurance on contacts so I only went to America's "Best" to get cheap glasses- I hardly will wear them- I don't even have glasses now and I thought 2 cheap pairs would be fine. Also I didn't like their selection. Next time I will just pay more money at my private office that I've been going to forever so I don't have to waste my time with another exam and crappy/cheap frame choices. I never realized there was such crappy places like that.

Oh and she tried to sell my glasses cases too. No thank you. I'll buy them elsewhere.
 

Optogal

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I saw somewhere that Massachusetts and Colorado are opening schools? Anyone have info on that?
 

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Jeez. Well I find it absolutely hilarious when PROFESSIONALS are complaining about a profession that they deemed was perfect for them. Nobody asked you to go to school so you could see 3 patients a day or stare at a wall all day long, instead you figured that out for yourselves and choose to go this route, so please stop blaming Optometry, and look in the mirror. Please, quit playing the victim and do something about your situation(s), because it is downright pathetic when I read posts of of OD's complaining about their patient load, or lack thereof etc etc.


For future students considering Optometry, please don't be thrown off by childish posts made by struggling doctors. Optometry is indeed a great profession, and like any other profession, it is what you make out of it. Yes there will be days where you see a few to zero patients, but, that isn't your fault, it's just Optometry, and if you truly wish to fix any blemishes that are prevalent in most practices, then it is very doable.

Though, I will say, Optometry does have one glaring hole, which I assume most pre-opts are unaware of. The glaring hole being the AOA, which is an organization composed of a bunch of panzees, who are largely responsible for Optometry in NA, sorta like the AMA for medicine. If optometry has any problems, then it is caused by the AOA, not the docs, patients, insurance panels etc etc. So while an OD can be successful, he/she will always be limited by the AOA and their special interests. I don't see the same thing in medicine or dentistry though, probably because their leaders aren't conniving asses.
 

Ryan_eyeball

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Three biggest culprits to the demise of Optometry. 1) Vision plans. These are garbage and if at all possible to be excluded from a practice. Gross will go up taking them, but net income is very poor off these plans. Only want to take medical plans? United Health Care requires you to take Sucktera aka Spectera. Aetna requires you are a provider for Eyemed. Cigna = VSP. See a diabetic patient on Aetna that has a Specialist copay of $40.00 vs the Eyemed copay of $0.00. Which one do you think the patient will want to pay? The Eyemed manual states the patient gets to decide which insurance to bill, huh???

Most students do not find out about the real problems/downfalls facing Optometry until they are out of school. One can not simply walk away and do something different with having $150-200k in student loans.

2) Oversaturation of OD's. There are way too darn many of us out there. You can be very proactive in volunteer work, fund raising, marketing, advertising, but there are only so many patients in a population. Then only a percentage will purchase glasses or contacts. Then only a percentage of optical patients will actually visit an Optometrist every year. IMHO, there should be a NEED to close at least FOUR schools.

3) Confusion on who preforms an eye exam. Who did your last eye exam? The school nurse, DMV, or the state's department of Transportation for a DOT license. Screenings are mistaken for Eye exams far too often.

The AOA is about the most worthless organization that I've ever seen. Save yourself 1k a year and do your own patient education.
 

Framecontrol

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As long as we have more competitive applicants who REALLY care about the profession, who want to be leaders and who really want to work hard to improve optometry then opening another school isn't such a big deal.

I hear you, I rather there be a high demand for optometrists than an oversupply.

BUT

I rather more so that their be smarter students who want to work hard to improve this profession, innovate, bring new things to the table and bring optometry in a positive direction.
 

thecgrblue

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Though, I will say, Optometry does have one glaring hole, which I assume most pre-opts are unaware of. The glaring hole being the AOA, which is an organization composed of a bunch of panzees, who are largely responsible for Optometry in NA, sorta like the AMA for medicine. If optometry has any problems, then it is caused by the AOA, not the docs, patients, insurance panels etc etc. So while an OD can be successful, he/she will always be limited by the AOA and their special interests. I don't see the same thing in medicine or dentistry though, probably because their leaders aren't conniving asses.

So what needs to be done to change and what are you doing yourself to fix it?
 

VA Hopeful Dr

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As long as we have more competitive applicants who REALLY care about the profession, who want to be leaders and who really want to work hard to improve optometry then opening another school isn't such a big deal.

I hear you, I rather there be a high demand for optometrists than an oversupply.

BUT

I rather more so that their be smarter students who want to work hard to improve this profession, innovate, bring new things to the table and bring optometry in a positive direction.

Opening more schools generally has the exact opposite effect. The fewer spots open, the more selective the schools get to be. More spots means many of the students who couldn't get in the first time around will now become ODs.
 

Framecontrol

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Opening more schools generally has the exact opposite effect. The fewer spots open, the more selective the schools get to be. More spots means many of the students who couldn't get in the first time around will now become ODs.

What you are saying is correct, but if you can't stop schools from opening what is the other way to combat the problem?

IMO, make the applicants more competitive.
 

Meibomian SxN

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....The AOA is about the most worthless organization that I've ever seen. Save yourself 1k a year and do your own patient education.

Exactly! Every OD on this site should have cancelled their AOA membership, if not already. Why support an organization that brings about the demise to our profession? :idea:
 

iVision07

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This is depressing to read when I'm pre-optometry and in the application process... :( :( I've graduated from college for two years now. I feel that I've finally found "my path" and that this is the profession that I will truly love and can make it my own one day. But after working in the past years, I'm much more realistic about employment, recession, etc. Reading these posts always make me question if I should still do this. I don't want to be convinced otherwise, but if practicing optometrists see no good future..it's really depressing to hear.
 

thecgrblue

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This is depressing to read when I'm pre-optometry and in the application process... :( :( I've graduated from college for two years now. I feel that I've finally found "my path" and that this is the profession that I will truly love and can make it my own one day. But after working in the past years, I'm much more realistic about employment, recession, etc. Reading these posts always make me question if I should still do this. I don't want to be convinced otherwise, but if practicing optometrists see no good future..it's really depressing to hear.

Well, consider the population, would it really be statistically significant? People that are pissed off are more likely to look for a medium to vent (speaking from experience). Do an internet search for "dentist oversupply". Every profession has its negatives, this forum is great to make you aware of what you will really encounter (both pro and con).
 

Meibomian SxN

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This is depressing to read when I'm pre-optometry and in the application process... :( :( I've graduated from college for two years now. I feel that I've finally found "my path" and that this is the profession that I will truly love and can make it my own one day. But after working in the past years, I'm much more realistic about employment, recession, etc. Reading these posts always make me question if I should still do this. I don't want to be convinced otherwise, but if practicing optometrists see no good future..it's really depressing to hear.

In all honesty, the current situation is moving into dire mode. If I were you, I would reconsider a new career path. Optometry isn't what it used to be :(
 
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