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The Board of Examiners in Optometry

Board Members

The Board of Examiners in Optometry consists of five members appointed by the Governor: Four licensed practicing optometrists who have been residents at least three years; plus one public member. Members are appointed for staggered terms of four years. Members serve until they are replaced or resign.

View Board Roster

For information about becoming a board member, visit the Governor’s Boards and Commissions web page.

Board Advisories

Advisory 1. Mandatory PDMP/Opioid Education for Initial Licensure & Renewal for Current Licensees with valid DEA Registration Numbers.

Effective July 1, 2018

All applicants for licensure that hold a valid DEA Registration number will need to provide proof of 2 hours of education completed within 2 years of the date of application in pain management and opioid use and addiction.

Current licensees with a valid DEA Registration number must have completed at least two hours of education in pain management and opioid use and addiction, during the two years preceding the application for renewal.

This education may be met by any course that meets 12 AAC 48.200 requirements and specifically includes pain management and opioid use and addiction.

Advisory 2. Mandatory Registration with Alaska Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP)

Statutory Authority: AS 08.72.060/AS 17.30.200
Implemented: June 2016

The Alaska Board of Examiners in Optometry reminds all licensed practitioners possessing a Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) number that they must be registered with the Alaska Prescription Drug Monitoring Program database (PDMP), available through the Alaska Pharmacy Board website. This registration must occur no later than July 17, 2017 or within 30 days of being issued a DEA number.

Alaska Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP)

Additionally, to comply with the rules set forth in AS 17.30.200(k), a practitioner is required to review the database PRIOR to prescribing a Schedule II or Schedule III controlled substance, except in those instances as detailed in AS 17.30.200(k).

Advisory 3. Scope of Practice

The Board of Examiners in Optometry reminds all licensees and future licensees that the scope of practice in Alaska currently remains unchanged following enactment of CSHB103(FIN). A licensee must specifically request and be individually authorized by the Board prior to performing any expanded therapeutic procedure following the licensee’s successful completion of all requirements set forth in 12 AAC 48.040.

Regulations governing the practice of optometry in the state of Alaska are well-defined and the Board of Examiners in Optometry actively and judiciously develops appropriate regulatory changes regarding uniform standards for the practice of optometry, advisory opinions regarding optometry practice procedures and policies, and limitations on practice under the authority granted by AS 08.72.050, 08.72.060, AS 08.72.240, AS 08.72.272, AS 08.72.276 and AS 08.72.278.

Advisory 4. Nontopical Therapeutic Injections Course for initial licensure by CREDENTIALS

Statutory Authority: AS 08.72.140 / AS 08.72.170
Implemented: November 2012

For applicants who are presently credentialed in another state:

  • Education typically should include seven hours of training, instruction and INCLUDING LAB regarding injections; such training typically includes these topics: intravenous, subconjunctival, subcutaneous, intralesional, infiltrative anesthesia, nerve block, and intramuscular injections & applications and must include a hands-on lab.
  • Applicants who have successfully passed the ISE portion of the NBEO Exam Part III will typically meet the requirement of AS 08.72.140(4)(C).
Advisory 5. Telehealth Regulations for Optometry as of November 15, 2023

PLEASE READ: The Board of Examiners in Optometry have approved regulations regarding the use of telehealth in optometry as a response to the implementation of centralized statute 08.02.130 that included optometrists. These new regulations will be in effect as of November 15, 2023. These regulations clarify that in Alaska, an optometrist must provide the same level of care for a telehealth visit as would be given to a patient in person, and that an ophthalmic prescription may not be determined based solely on a telehealth examination. Please become familiar with regulation 12 AAC 48.370 to be certain that your practice of optometry is in compliance with this regulation. Failure to adhere to these regulations will result in disciplinary action.

Advisory 6. Clarification of Continuing Education Requirements

Following the announcement in late 2022 by COPE describing new CE course formats, many questions from Alaska optometrists have been received. To clarify the confusion that the new categories have generated, the Board is issuing this statement.

30 of the 40 required CE hours for a biennial license renewal period will need to be “synchronous-in person,” formerly known as “live.” The remaining 10 hours can be inclusive of the remaining formats, “synchronous -virtual,” and “asynchronous.” All other requirements remain intact such as the nature of approved content, opioid hours if applicable, practice management limitations, and ocular pathology or pharmacology required hours. Please refer to optometry regulations 12 AAC 48.200-230 for complete details of the requirements.