What Someone Seeking a Job as an Optometrist Can Expect for a Salary Range

If you're considering a career in optometry, one of the most important factors to consider is salary. Optometry can be a lucrative field, but salaries can vary depending on a number of factors, including experience, location, and employer. In this blog post, we'll take a closer look at what someone seeking a job in optometry can expect the salary range to be.

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Average Salary for Optometrists

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual salary for optometrists in the United States was $120,530 as of May 2020. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $67,240 per year, while the highest 10 percent earned more than $204,610 per year.

Factors That Affect Salary

As mentioned earlier, there are several factors that can affect an optometrist's salary. Here are some of the most important factors to consider:

Experience: Optometrists with more experience typically earn higher salaries than those who are just starting out. For example, according to the BLS, optometrists with less than one year of experience earn a median salary of $87,470 per year, while those with 20 or more years of experience earn a median salary of $140,460 per year.

Location: Salaries for optometrists can vary depending on where you work. According to the BLS, the states with the highest average salaries for optometrists as of May 2020 were:

  • North Dakota: $186,690 per year
  • Alaska: $173,010 per year
  • Massachusetts: $170,940 per year
  • New Mexico: $168,450 per year
  • Vermont: $162,480 per year

Type of Employer: Optometrists can work in a variety of settings, including private practice, hospitals, and retail settings. Salaries can vary depending on the type of employer. According to the BLS, optometrists who work in physicians' offices earn a median salary of $123,920 per year, while those who work in health and personal care stores earn a median salary of $114,180 per year.

Specialization: Optometrists can also specialize in certain areas, such as pediatric optometry or low vision rehabilitation. Specializing in a particular area can lead to higher salaries. For example, according to the BLS, optometrists who specialize in other health practitioners earn a median salary of $138,170 per year.

Education: Optometrists who have earned advanced degrees, such as a Doctor of Optometry (OD) or a PhD, may be eligible for higher salaries. Advanced degrees can also lead to opportunities for advancement within the field.

Conclusion

Overall, optometry can be a lucrative field for those who are interested in vision care. While salaries can vary depending on a number of factors, including experience, location, and employer, the median annual salary for optometrists is $120,530 as of May 2020. If you're considering a career in optometry, it's important to do your research to determine the salary range for your desired position and location.