Ophthalmic Medical Personnel
Now is the time to pursue a career in healthcare. To get started, enroll at the college, then complete a program application using the instructions on this page. Contact Kathleen Rodgers if you have questions or want to schedule an information session.
What You Will Learn
What is your vision for the future? Central Piedmont's ophthalmic medical personnel program can prepare you with the skills and knowledge needed to be a highly successful professional in the eye care industry.
Learn more about the ophthalmic medical personnel program in this video.
Ophthalmic medical personnel provide support services to the ophthalmologist and are an important member of the eye care team, supplying vital information to the physician who is treating the patient.
Ophthalmic medical personnel may perform the following duties:
- obtain patient general medical and ophthalmic history
- perform visual acuity testing and ocular function evaluations. (e.g. color vision tests, motility and pupil assessment)
- verify eye glasses prescriptions
- perform eye measurements and diagnostic testing to assist the doctor in diagnosis
- assist in ophthalmic office procedures
- administer ophthalmic medications under physician direction
- provide patient services and education
The ophthalmic medical personnel program prepares you to perform ophthalmic procedures under the supervision of a licensed physician. The program covers topics including ocular anatomy and physiology, diseases of the eye, optics and refractometry, ophthalmic pharmacology, patient care, and others. The program includes both didactic/classroom and “hands on” clinical experience. Clinical sites are located in Mecklenburg and surrounding counties.
Skilled and personable professionals are in high demand and have many employment opportunities in medical institutions, health clinics, physician practices, or other settings where eye healthcare is provided.
Accreditation and Collaborating Organizations
The ophthalmic medical personnel program is accredited by the International Council of Accreditation (ICA) as a clinical assistant and technician level program.
International Council of Accreditation Commission
2025 Woodlane Drive
St. Paul, MN 55125-2995
ICA is sponsored by the following collaborating organizations:
- International Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology (IJCAHPO)
- Association of Technical Personnel in Ophthalmology (ATPO)
- Consortium of Ophthalmic Training Programs (COTP)
- Canadian Society of Ophthalmic Medical Personnel (CSOMP/SCPMO )
Upon earning their diploma, graduates may become nationally certified by passing the Certified Ophthalmic Assistant exam (COA) administered by IJCAHPO. Associate Degree students may become certified by passing the Certified Ophthalmic Technician exam (COT) administered by IJCAHPO.
The ophthalmic medical personnel program at Central Piedmont is a member of the Consortium of Ophthalmic Training Programs (COTP), a non-profit corporation of ophthalmic educational programs in the U.S. and Canada.
Why Choose Central Piedmont
Our program is accredited by the International Council of Accreditation (ICA). Our certification exam pass rates and job placement rate were 100% in 2021-2022. We teach students to be leaders in their industry and set high standards for our students. Learn from field-experienced instructors, gain valuable hands-on experience before you graduate, and complete your diploma at a fraction of the cost as compared to a private school.
Real World Education
At Central Piedmont, your education goes beyond what you learn in class. We offer numerous opportunities for you to enhance your learning — and to make friends, network, and pursue your passions — through clubs and organizations, sports, events and activities, leadership opportunities, job experience, volunteer experiences, visual and performing arts, and even international experiences.