The Four Competency Levels of Optometry Based on “A Global Competency-Based Model of Scope of Practice in Optometry”

The Four Competency Levels of Optometry Based on “A Global Competency-Based Model of Scope of Practice in Optometry”

Background

In 2005, the General Delegates Meeting of the World Council of Optometry (WCO) formally adopted the Global Competency-Based Model of Scope of Practice in Optometry. This model had been designed to provide a rational framework for addressing the challenges of increased practitioner mobility across international borders and the need to promote greater harmonisation of optometric education around the world.

The model used as its basis the then current version of entry-level competency standards developed by Optometrists Association Australia (now Optometry Australia).

In 2014, Dr. Patricia Kiely-Poropat was commissioned by WCO to review the document using the competency standards from the Optometry Australia Entry-level Competency Standards for Optometry 2014 again addressing the four scopes of practice previously described. This review reflects the changes in education and scope of practice since 2005 and the decision of WCO to define the minimum competencies required for a person to call themselves an optometrist. The resulting document was circulated to the Education and the Legislation, Registration and Standards Committees of the WCO for review and comments, which were incorporated into “A Global Competency-Based Model of Scope of Practice in Optometry.”

Competency Level 1

Characterised by Optical Technology Services (OT): Management and dispensing of ophthalmic lenses, ophthalmic frames and other ophthalmic devices that correct defects of the visual system

Competency Level 2 (Includes Level 1)

Characterised by Visual Function Services (VF): Investigation, examination, measurement, diagnosis and correction/management of defects of the visual system

Competency Level 3 (Includes Level 2)

Characterised by Ocular Diagnostic Services (ODx): Investigation, examination and evaluation of the eye and adnexa, and associated systemic factors to detect, diagnose and manage disease

Competency Level 4 (Includes Level 3)

Characterised by Ocular Therapeutic Services (OTx): Use of pharmaceutical agents and other procedures to manage ocular conditions/disease

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