Where to Go for an Eye Examination
Eye exams can be administered by either an optometrist or an ophthalmologist. The Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry reports there are approximately 30,000 optometrists in the country, accounting for about 70% of the eye care market. Ophthalmologists are medical doctors specially trained to treat eye diseases and perform eye surgery. Approximately 15,300 ophthalmologists practice in the United States. If you're going for your annual eye exam, the procedures and tests will generally be the same regardless of the type of provider.
Optometrists or ophthalmologists can work in a private practice or retail setting. Retail chains typically have at least five locations with evening and/or weekend hours. More than 50% of eyewear dollars are spent at retail locations, according to Jobson Optical Research, and your vision care panel composition keeps up with the trend. The vision network includes most of the nation's leading optical retail brands, as well as thousands of independent providers. With convenient locations near shopping centers and places of business, millions of Americans trust their vision to these names. Retail-affiliated providers must meet the same standards as those in private practices, ensuring members receive consistently high quality care.