Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Ophthalmic Technicians at EMG

Eyecare Medical Group encourages all of their clinical staff to be certified in some way. Certification for clinical personnel is generally done through JCAHPO, the Joint Commission of Allied Health Professionals in Ophthalmology. JCAHPO is an international organization and is the standard in ophthalmic certification. There are several different levels of certification for ophthalmic technicians. COA, or certified ophthalmic assistant, is considered the entry level certification into ophthalmology for clinical personnel. COT, or certified ophthalmic technician, is the intermediate level. COT’s have usually been in ophthalmology for some time and worked as a COA for at least a year. COMT’s, or certified ophthalmic medical technologist, is JCAHPO’s highest level of certification. COMT’s are generally among the top trained and educated among ophthalmic personnel and have generally worked in ophthalmology for an extended period of time. EMG has a clinical staff of 34, of which 5 are COT’s, 1 is a COMT, and about 20 are COA’s. Of that staff of 34, 21 are also credentialed to assist in surgery.

EMG has several other employees which are certified in different areas. There are several paraoptometric professionals; that is, those who are certified through the American Optometric Association. Our photographer is a CRA, or certified retinal angiographer. We also have 2 RN’s who are also CRNO’s, or certified registered nurses in ophthalmology, and they are certified through ASORN, the American Society of Ophthalmic Registered Nurses.

Anyone who holds a certification through any of these organizations is required to have extensive knowledge and training in their field and must pass a test in order to be granted certification. They are all required to maintain their individual certifications through continuing education credits and retesting when required.