Internship Partner: Sam's Optical

Location: Cape Coast, Ghana

The level of visual impairment and blindness in Ghana, and the larger continent of Africa, are disproportionate to the global blindness rate. Currently, there are 200 optometrists serving 25 million people in Ghana. Contributing to the lack of optical care in Ghana are lack of facilities, inadequate numbers of practitioners, limited optical educational opportunities, and lack of awareness about eye health contributes to reduce economic, social, and health status.

This internship has been crafted for students with a keen interest in Optometry and Ophthalmology with an desire to assist in improving the current situation in Ghana. Our organization is in partnership with Sam's Optical. Sam's Optical was initially established in Cape Coast central region; however it has now expanded to eastern region- Nsawam and Northern region –Tamale to serve these communities in the three regions.

Volunteers and Interns will be involved with both the business and health care aspects of Optometry. Integral to the internship will be communication and interaction with the community, promoting health, and disseminating health related information.

Specifically, Volunteers and Interns will work with the Sam Optical in the following areas:

Tasks of an optometrist in COMMUNITY OUTREACH practice typically involve:

  • Communicating with patients to get detailed case histories;
  • Examining the eyes of patients of all ages to detect signs of injury, disease, abnormality or vision defects;
  • Checking for signs and symptoms of general health conditions (e.g. diabetes);
  • Using specialist equipment for diagnosis and testing;
  • Issuing prescriptions for spectacles or contact lenses;
  • Fitting and checking prescribed lenses in order to correct vision defects;
  • Offering advice and reassurance about vision-related matters;
  • Offering help and advice for patients choosing frames and lenses;
  • Writing referral communications to doctors;
  • Liaising with other medical practitioners and sometimes sharing the care of patients with chronic ophthalmic conditions;

In addition, interns with education and/or experience in the field of optometry and ophthalmology may assist in:

  • Managing staff, including dispensing opticians and clerical staff;
  • Supervising and training junior staff;
  • Managing the retail aspects of spectacles, contact lenses, and other vision care products;
  • Administering, organizing and planning the development of the practice;
  • Liaising with sales representatives from vision care product suppliers;
  • Auto Refractor
  • Ophthalmology for Operating Cataract.

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