Sometimes, poll results just surprise the stuffing out of us. This is one of those.
In our most recent Pop-up Poll, 42 percent respondents said they would not choose optometry as a career, if you were starting out today. Nearly 21 percent said they’d start out as an associate in an optometric practice, and 15 percent said they’d start as an associate in a medical practice. Nearly 9 percent said they’d buy or buy into an existing practice, and just more than 5 percent said they would start a practice from scratch. The remaining responses were divided by going into industry/research/academia (5 percent), VA or other government/military/public health setting (2 percent) and taking on a lease/franchise (just more than 1 percent).
Almost half of the respondents said they are no longer in the same modality of practice that they were when they started their careers.
Women ODs accounted for nearly 83 percent of the respondents, with male ODs accounting for 14 percent. The remaining 1 percent were not ODs but working in the profession.
Fifty-two percent of the men responding said they would not choose optometry, compared to 41 percent of the women giving that answer.