Development of optometry in the People's Republic of China

Clin Exp Optom. 2021 Mar;104(2):139-142. doi: 10.1111/cxo.13115.


The significant economic growth in China has resulted in a better quality of life. In order to cope with the demand for quality eye care, there are plans to increase the number of optometric personnel and to standardise the comprehensive eye-care services. This review aims to update the current educational programs in optometry and the regulations pertaining to the practice of optometry in China. There has been much progress since the publication of a report on the development of optometry in Greater China 15-years ago. China currently has three types of optometry programs: Diploma, Bachelor of Science, and Bachelor of Medicine. Only graduates of the Optometric Medicine program may perform full scope comprehensive eye-care services. Graduates from the other two types of programs may not use diagnostic or therapeutic pharmaceutical agents. The number of practising optometrists in China therefore needs to be planned by the Ministry of Education and the National Health Commission, accordingly.

Keywords: China; optometry.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • China
  • Humans
  • Optometrists*
  • Optometry*
  • Quality of Life