Ophthalmic photographers work in ophthalmic medical centers, and their primary job is to capture close-up images of patients' retinas, corneas, and other ocular structures. These images can be used to diagnose problems and can also be used to document diseases, surgeries, and treatments. They will have to use a variety of specialized equipment like microscopes and cameras to capture two-dimensional and three-dimensional photos. They will have to know how to conduct tests, such as using dye to obtain an angiogram of the eye. They will need to know how to develop exposed film and mount and label slides to be included in a patient's medical chart.
They may also be required to clean and maintain the equipment that they work with. They will have to work very close to the patient and will need to have a calm, reassuring manner. This is so they can instruct the patient's gaze and ensure that they obtain the necessary results. They should have a strong attention to detail so that they can easily detect differences in patients' eyes and find correct diagnoses. An ophthalmic photographer works with technology, so they should be comfortable using computers and other digital equipment.
There is no formal training program for ophthalmic photographers, but there are many programs in ophthalmic technology that include photography in their curricula. It is also possible to learn on the job or in medical programs. Obtaining an associate's degree in ophthalmic technology will teach other useful skills that could be applied on an ophthalmologist's team, which makes an applicant especially appealing.
Ophthalmic Photographer Tasks
Administer contrast medium into patient's eye region for diagnostic purposes.
Monitor patients' conditions and reactions, reporting abnormal signs to physician.
Operate imaging equipment to produce images of blood vessels of the eye.