Life As An Orthoptist

A Day At The Clinic

My day at the clinic is quite intense. Despite the organized chaos, I enjoy being at the clinic as no two days are the same.

Mornings, as usual, are insanely busy. Still, the starting person has to run around quickly turning on all computers and machinery and setting up the clinic, ready for the day. Of course, there are times when the clinic is in an absolute state of silence. The short period is too short for me to start a task. So I sit there thinking about dinner already whilst sipping on my morning coffee. On the other hand, there are times when patients supposedly booked at 15 min intervals, show up all together at once. As if they had it all planned. That’s when the chaos surely begins.

I have noticed, at several workplaces that the day gradually settles, hopefully by lunchtime. Making me so grateful that the morning session is shorter than the afternoon. Depending on patients’ booking schedules I manage my time to get things done like managing correspondences and phone triaging. Or I might spend my afternoon calculating IOLs or auditing cataract surgeries.
Screening patients can become quite routinal. For this reason, my team and I rotate jobs. I may start the day screening patients, then move on to preparing patients for surgery and informing them about post-op care. Or I might set up and assist in surgery or perform some sterilizing duties.

Over time, I have created friendly bonds with most of my patients as I always aim to deliver the best care. It is highly rewarding when a little patient asks me “Will I be there for his next visit?” Or when a patient remembers me and genuinely thanks me for my care. That’s when I know I have successfully lessened the worries and fears of the patients. I might have just made their visit a tad easier by knowing the adjustments I have to make to make them just a little more comfortable like placing a cushion behind their backs, accommodating for a wheelchair, showing them what difference eye drops can make to irritating eye symptoms, giving a child a sticker or simply comforting them through a procedure.

There’s always a story to take home and share with my family or a little funny scenario that drew a smile on my face or something that I have learned and won’t forget.
For this reason, I am always looking forward to a new day at the clinic. At least, those mornings where I have had my cup of coffee!


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