We had the pleasure of speaking to Dr. Neel Vyas and learned a lot from him on how to run an optometry practice. His top priority is always the care of his patients. In fact, he attributes patient care as the key to a successful practice. Dr. Vyas runs an excellent practice with a focus in disease management. He explained to us how he works closely with doctors in his clinic’s neighbourhood to treat their patients and refer his patients to ophthalmologists nearby. Dr. Vyas also introduced us to the equipment he uses on a daily basis. For example, the electronic medical record (EMR) that he uses is called PS Suite, which is relatively new for optometry, and different from what we have seen in other optometry clinics. It was interesting to learn that PS Suite is more convenient than other EMRs, especially when it comes to billing and prescribing medication.
Dr. Vyas then shared some insight on starting one’s own practice in a busy city such as Toronto. He emphasized the importance of gaining experience and exposure in optometry as soon as possible. For instance, he suggested working or volunteering at an optometry clinic to gain experience in performing optical coherence tomography (OCT) tests to familiarize oneself with the imaging process and begin analysing the retina’s distinctive layers. Furthermore, Dr. Vyas shared his volunteer work in Mexico and Kenya for the past 20 years. It was inspiring to listen to his stories of helping patients in need of eye care. As some of us have plans to do volunteer work through VOSH mission trips, hearing Dr. Vyas’s personal experience further encourages us to pursue this. In addition to helping the less fortunate by providing eye care, we also gain experience in treating patients and seeing different cases.
Visiting Dr. Vyas at his practice helped shed light on an optometrist’s day-to-day activity as well as a glimpse into what it takes to run a practice. Thank you to Dr. Vyas for taking the time to show us around, answer all of our questions and share valuable advice. The CAOS Mentorship offered a real world look into optometry that we do not necessarily get in the classroom.
Emily, Regan and Melanie