Ophthalmology has excellent prospects both in terms of a stable and well-paying job. This article acquaints all the aspirants with the salary, job description, and educational requirements.
Eye problems and diseases have become a common sight in the modern-day world. The reasons behind this are prolonged working hours in front of the computer, air pollution, eye defects, and hereditary problems. Ophthalmologists are people who are experts at diagnosing, identifying, and treating eye problems, and also suggesting preventive measures for better eye care.
Ophthalmology is a high paying career. Unlike other jobs where freshmen are not paid much, here they are paid well from the start. The annual average salary as per experience can be listed down as under.
- Freshmen – 1 year: USD 100,000 – USD 200,000
- 1 – 5 years: USD 130,000 – USD 240,000
- 5 – 10 years: USD 175,000 – USD 250,000
- 10 years and more: USD 150,000 – USD 340,000.
The national average ranges between USD 235,000 – USD 240,000.
Ophthalmologists are trained experts who specialize in identifying and treating eye related problems. Their duties and responsibilities include:
- Diagnosing and treating eye problems or disorders such as cataract, glaucoma, nearsightedness, farsightedness, eye injuries, etc., in the patients.
- Identifying problems using specialized equipment and devices such as magnifying glasses, microscopes, etc.
- Prescribing appropriate treatments such as the use of contact lenses, medications, or surgery to the patients.
- Documenting cases, and preparing and preserving medical records in order to refer cases in the future.
- Providing tips, eye exercises, and preventive measures.
- Preparing eye care developmental plans in coordination with other ophthalmologists for effective patient care.
- Performing administrative work such as managing day-to-day office supplies and patient appointments.
Becoming an ophthalmologist requires one to spend years of practice and study to gain an expertise over the subject, and turn into a specialist in the business. Once again, the journey starts from high school where you need to perform exceptionally well in science. Further, you need to obtain an undergraduate degree, and then move on to the next level of attending medical college for another four years.
There are many colleges and universities that impart training and education in this domain. The next mile is three years of on-the-job training in a hospital. Further, you are required to successfully complete various examinations in order to get certified. Post the residency program, it is necessary to clear examinations pertaining to individual specialty areas. Apart from formal education, commitment towards patient care, understanding of patients’ problems, and effective communication skills are some other prerequisites for this job. Moreover, keeping in touch with the latest updates and technologies is equally important.
Working Conditions and Career Outlook
Ophthalmologists work in a clean and well-ventilated environment. Most of them opt for a private practice. However, some also choose to be employed. Large health care organizations, hospitals, eye care camps, etc., recruit such doctors on a large-scale. Considering the rate of expansion of the medical industry and the demand for eye services, the job prospects for ophthalmologists certainly looks promising. According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the employment outlook for physicians and surgeons in general is good, with an 18% increase in jobs expected between 2012 – 2022.