Aug 06, 2020  
Catalog 2017-18 
Catalog 2017-18 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Ophthalmic Medical Assistant (OPMA)

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Program Description

An Ophthalmic Medical Assistant assists with eye examinations and provides patient education. In this entry level position, OPMA’s conduct patient histories, set up and clean up exam rooms, provide patient education and assist with eye exams. After successful completion of this training, passing the course exam and obtaining six months of experience, students are eligible to sit for certification through the Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology.

Program Outcomes

Successful Completion:

CCBC Credential:

Students will be awarded a Continuing Education Workforce Training Certificate and have access to a Continuing Education academic record (transcript). After getting six months of experience, students are eligible to sit for certification through the Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology.

Certifying Organization:

Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology (JCAHPO);

Certification exam cost: $300

Financial Aid and Payment Options

  • Continuing Education Opportunity Grant
  • Partial Payment Option (through Nelnet Business Solutions)
  • Tuition Waiver for Senior Citizens and Individuals with Disabilities
  • Employer/Sponsor Paid Tuition
  • Division of Rehabilitation Services (DORS)
  • Local Office of Workforce Development

Program Length

16-20 weeks

Prerequisite courses begin monthly at most CCBC locations. OPMA courses begin in February at CCBC Randallstown (evenings/weekends) and in September/October at CCBC Hunt Valley (evenings/weekends).

Program Requirements

High School Diploma or GED

All students must be computer literate and have Internet access. Clinical eligibility is in part dependent upon a criminal background check and urine drug testing. Cost of the test is the responsibility of the student.


Students must have the following paperwork turned in to the coordinator PRIOR to the start of clinical:

  • Negative PPD (six months) or negative chest x-ray less than one year old
  • Positive titer or proof of vaccination/immunity for measles, mumps, rubella and varicella
  • Hepatitis B vaccination or declination form
  • Tetanus shot (less than ten years)
  • Copy of health insurance card
  • Copy of high school diploma or GED
  • Current flu vaccination
  • Background check and drug screening

Application Process

Open Entry – No screening or documentation required.

Program Course Sequence

HIPAA Training, CPR and First Aid classes REQUIRE 100% attendance. Students arriving late to class will not be admitted. Late arrival to, or early exit from, class will also result in a failing grade and no refund. Students will then be required to retake the class at their expense.

Course Number

Course Title

Course Hours



Textbook Information

(approximate cost; subject to change)



AHE 534

Medical Terminology for Health Occupations





Medical Terminology—The Language of Health Care; published by Lippincott

ISBN 1451176767; $83.15

AHC 360



AHL 719

HIPAA Training



HIPAA Training Online








Handouts online

AHE 805

CPR for Health Care Providers




Book provided and included in course costs.

AHL 798




AHL 804

Introduction to Electronic Health Records (EHR)



Intro to EHR Online







Electronic Health Record for Allied Health Careers (w/CD Only); published by McGraw Hill; ISBN 0073309788; $110.65

Prerequisite Totals:



$836 - $876



Course Series:

AHE 781

Ophthalmic Medical Assistant Class




Included in cost of class

AHL 704

Ophthalmic Clinical






Course Series Totals:





Course Series & Prerequisites Totals:


$2706- $2746





Additional Information

Course Substitutions:

Medical Terminology AHE 534 can be substituted with:  OFAD 141 or ALHL 115 or AHL 717

HIPAA AHC 360 can be substituted with:  AHL 719 or AHC 356

Electronic Health Records AHL 798 can be substituted with:  AHL 804


Additional Expenses:

Expenses other than tuition, fees and books include above screenings, medical testing, scrubs and miscellaneous supplies for an approximate total of $750.


Skills for Success:

See Technical Standards at the end of this document.


Career Opportunities:

Continued training in this field can result in promotion to higher level ophthalmic positions in an eye center. Higher level positions are often allowed to assist with ophthalmic surgeries.

Career Coach

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Program Contact Information

Administrative Assistant:

Maria Buttion


Essex, HTEC 005



Shauna Bullard


Essex, HTEC 001

Technical Standards

Technical Standards for CCBC’S Ophthalmic Medical Assistant (OPMA) Training Series  

The primary goal of The Community College of Baltimore County’s Ophthalmic Medical Assistant Training Series is to adequately prepare students for an entry-level position as a medical assistant in an ophthalmic office.  The duties of an ophthalmic medical assistant require the ability to stand or sit for long periods of time, sometimes in awkward positions, while constantly being focused on the task at hand.  Ophthalmic medical assistants need to exercise safe practices while exposed to unpleasant sights, odors, materials, and communicable diseases.  Their duties also require them to be detail oriented and to work accurately and quickly.  A high level of manual dexterity, psychomotor skills, and integrity are vital.  Following is a partial listing of the types of skills typically required for adequate job performance:


Physical Requirements:

  1. Sufficient strength and mobility to:
  • Work quickly to meet deadlines and/or production requirements
  • Keep hand and arm steady while performing a task with the other hand and arm

  B. Fine motor coordination sufficient to perform precise tasks such as:

  • Handle delicate instruments with precision
  • Handle instruments and equipment that may be costly to replace if damaged
  • Quickly and precisely adjust controls on equipment
  • Perform basic repairs to instrumentation
  • Clean and assemble instrumentation

  C. Adequate vision to:

  • Read and interpret
  • Adequate distinction of colors to read equipment indicators
  • Read instruction sheets and computer screen


  Interpersonal Skills and Professionalism:

  1. Have the ability to:
  • Work in a professional manner under sometimes stressful situations
  • Pay close attention to detail and recordkeeping
  • Commitment to learning and understanding new technologies, instrumentation, and procedures
  • Commitment to following approved standards, guidelines, policies, and procedures
  • Interact in a professional manner with many personalities and attitudes and with people from many different backgrounds
  • Respect and protect patient rights and confidentiality without regard to personal beliefs and judgments
  • Maintain proper certifications required to perform the duties of the profession
  • Accurately utilize all resource material available to remain current in the profession,
  • Maintain a conscience/professional morality in the application of infection control techniques
  • Willingness to precept (train) others

  B. Have sufficient communication skills to:

  • Give and receive accurate written and verbal instructions
  • Carry out all written and verbal instructions
  • Follow proper channels of communication
  • Communicate in a calm and professional manner
  • Communicate clearly and effectively to any team members regarding issues that may be difficult to address (i.e. problem with machinery that could affect sterilization; admission of own errors, etc.)


Intellectual Ability and Emotional Stability To:

  • Ability to apply critical thinking and problem solving skills
  • Exercise independent judgment to properly perform tasks at hand
  • Accurately utilize all resource material available to perform the task at hand
  • Perform duties while exposed to communicable diseases and unpleasant sights, odors, and materials 
  • Accept feedback from others


Environment Requirements:

This profession involves risks and/or discomforts that require special safety precautions including, but not limited to:

  • Wearing gowns, caps, masks, gloves, and eye protection
  • Working in an environment that exposes one to potentially hazardous materials, such as cleaning agents and chemicals and blood-borne pathogens
  • Providing proof of recent immunizations against infectious diseases such as measles, mumps, and rubella
  • Receiving Hepatitis B vaccine and annual testing for exposure to tuberculosis
  • Submitting to periodic drug screening

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