We hear the word advocacy thrown around quite a bit in optometry, but what does advocacy in optometry really mean?
About Dr. Henderson: Dr. Erick Henderson earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington, IL. He completed optometry school at Southern College of Optometry in Memphis, TN. While at SCO Dr. Henderson served as the AOSA President and developed a passion for advancing and protecting the optometric profession. During his time at SCO he was awarded with many recognitions for his leadership and commitment to optometry. He practices in Pittsburgh, PA with a special emphasis in dry eye disease, contact lenses, and medical eye care. He is an active member of the Western Pennsylvania Optometric Society, the Pennsylvania Optometric Association, and the American Optometric Association. Dr. Henderson is also very passionate about service, serving as a volunteer and board member for the Lamu Center of Preventative Health in Lamu, Kenya and his local Lions Club.
Learn more on why advocacy in optometry is so important, and how and why new grads need to get involved.
Today, there are much larger and more frightening concerns.
We need to be more involved now than ever before.
I want to challenge every OD reading this to find your advocacy “why.” Why did you become an optometrist? What makes you care about the people you care for?
These are the most important things that you can do to protect your patients and the profession.
- Be a member of the AOA and your state affiliation. - Organized optometry is fighting these battles for us on the front lines and behind the scenes, 24/7. For me, being a member is like paying for an insurance policy on our profession. It works hard for us all the time and makes sure that we can provide quality care to our patients.
- Advocate in your exam room - Remind patients of the importance of the exam you are providing. Talk about what you do in an exam and why it is important to monitor their eye health. As optometrists, we clearly understand why a yearly eye exam is important, but often our patients don’t. It is our duty to empower our patients to make the correct decisions for their health and safety.
In this video, Dr. Bryan Rogoff shares his future outlook for optometry.