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GPs and optometrists

Did you know, Australian optometrists possess a range of clinical skills and can perform the following procedures including, but not limited to:

  • refraction – measuring the optics of the eye
  • binocular vision tests – testing the coordination of the two eyes as a team
  • ophthalmoscopy – internal examination of the eye to help identify eye disease
  • slitlamp biomicroscopy – external, detailed examination of the eye
  • tonometry – measuring the pressure of the eyeball
  • anaesthetics to perform tonometry
  • optical dispensing – supply and management of spectacles and contact lens
  • mydriatics where required for internal examinations
  • cycloplegics where required.

Therapeutically endorsed optometrists are also qualified to use:

  • medicated eye drops to conduct diagnostic procedures.

Additionally, throughout Australia optometrists are authorised to possess, use and prescribe scheduled medicines – in the form of topical eye drops – such as anti-inflammatory and corticosteroid eye drops to treat eye diseases such as conjunctivitis, keratitis, uveitis and glaucoma.

As a general practitioner you can refer your patients to an optometrist for many aspects of primary eye care, including, but not limited to:

  • contact lenses
  • sports vision
  • colour vision
  • low vision
  • children’s vision
  • vision therapy
  • workplace occupational health and safety.

Effective collaboration between GPs and optometrists can enhance patient care and better utilise valuable ophthalmology time.

GPs are welcome to participate in our CPD events to learn more about eye health issues.

Connect with your local optometrist to refer your patients.

Contact our Professional Development & Clinical Policy Manager for more information on networking with optometrists.

Recommend our Good vision for life website to your patients.

Resources for general practitioners

Factsheet: Do you know all the things that an optometrist can do?
Video: What happens in an eye examination
A guide for General Practitioners on the use of Digital Retinal Photography
Paediatric referral guide
Adult referral guide
Victoria: GP referral to optometric services form

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