LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--CHA Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center (CHA HPMC), a member of CHA Health Systems, a global network providing a full spectrum of dynamic healthcare services, and the Southern California Eye Institute (SCEI) at CHA HPMC announced a strategic partnership with Fox Family Foundation to launch the Ophthalmic Technician Education Program (OTEP) to train the next generation of students to become Certified Ophthalmic Technicians and serve the eye care needs of the community.
The OTEP program—the only program of its kind in California, and one of the 14 nationwide—will provide students in the Los Angeles community access to high-quality education and job training opportunities to meet the growing need for ophthalmic technicians in a variety of healthcare settings. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects 16% employment growth for ophthalmic technicians between 2018 and 2028, providing approximately 9,000 employment opportunities.
“Recent research conducted by our eye experts at SCEI has found that visual impairment and blindness are on the rise in California as a result of shifting demographics, an aging population, and a high incidence of diabetes,” said Rohit Varma. “The specialized OTEP program will address the acute shortage of skilled ophthalmic technicians needed to care for these individuals and prepare skilled allied healthcare professionals to serve the vision needs of all age groups in Los Angeles and Southern California."
"Investing in workforce development initiatives like the OTEP program is not only important to diversity and inclusion, it has the potential to build awareness and adoption of better eye health practices within Los Angeles," said Lee Fox, president of the Fox Family Foundation.
The 21-month program is comprised of academic coursework, technical skills, and hands-on clinical experience from experts in SCEI’s state-of-the-art eye institute. Graduates from the program will work closely with patients and their families to educate them on their eye health, guide them on treatments, and inform ophthalmologists by conducting procedures to help with the diagnosis and treatment of vision problems.
“At CHA HPMC, we understand the importance of a well-educated and skilled medical workforce for the overall prosperity of diverse communities we serve,” said Robert Allen, CHA HPMC president and chief executive officer. “Addition of the OTEP program will help us not only look after the needs of our communities, but also cultivate a more skilled workforce to provide the highest quality of vision care.”
SCEI is currently accepting applications for the inaugural class of the program, scheduled for August 2020.
About Southern California Eye Institute
Southern California Eye Institute is dedicated to providing the highest level of vision care, using the latest technology and treatments to deliver the best outcome to patients in Los Angeles and from around the world. The institute’s expert physician-scientists are advancing innovations in stem cell and regenerative therapies, artificial intelligence and bioelectronic implants to further the prevention, early detection and treatment of eye diseases and conditions. Founded by world-renowned ophthalmologist Rohit Varma, MD, MPH, SCEI is located in Los Angeles at CHA Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center. For more information, visit www.sceyes.org.
About Fox Family Foundation
Fox Family Foundation funds innovative programs that dismantle the link between poverty and vision loss. Investments prioritize diversity and inclusion for visually impaired populations in all career fields, most especially in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM), as well as building skills for economically disadvantaged people so they can be employed in Eye Care, Vision Science, Special Education and other high-growth career fields that directly benefit people with low vision. For more information, visit www.foxgiving.org.
About CHA Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center
CHA Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center (CHA HPMC) is a nationally recognized acute care facility that has cared for Hollywood and its surrounding communities since 1924. Today, CHA HPMC offers comprehensive health care services with a 434-bed acute care facility, including 89 skilled nursing beds. The hospital has a medical staff of more than 500 physicians and specialists, representing 69 specialties and 75 different countries. CHA HPMC embraces the area’s diverse, multicultural patient populations by providing all who walk through its doors quality care in a compassionate manner. It is a member of CHA Health Systems, a dynamic global healthcare organization that provides a full spectrum of services in seven countries around the world, including 25 hospitals and clinics, 30 research and 14 education institutions and 30 bio/pharmaceutical/healthcare companies. For more information, visit http://www.hollywoodpresbyterian.com.