The 2017 Annual Meeting may be over, but there’s still so much to talk about! For the newest Fellows and COVTs who earned their certifications this year, this past Meeting in Jacksonville, Florida, is sure to be one that they never forget.
In order to continue to honor their outstanding effort and commitment, we reached out to each of these newly-certified optometrists and vision therapists to bring you the “WHY” (and how and where!) of their certification process. Our first is Dr. Brett Miller!
Where are you now?
- Where do you practice/work?
Triangle Visions Optometry in North Carolina. Vision Therapy Clinics are present in our Cary, Raleigh and Chapel Hill locations.
- Tell us a bit about the practice.
We started off as a one-location practice over forty years ago, but now have 12 locations across North Carolina and are still growing! I am a partner and board member of the practice and serve as the Director of Vision Therapy Services. I am the only doctor between the three locations with a VT clinic, but have nine vision therapists on staff.
How did you get involved with VT?
I expressed interest in this specialty as an undergraduate student and was a student member of COVD during my time at the Southern College of Optometry. My time during fourth year at Draisin Vision Group in Charleston, SC really affirmed this passion of mine and the decision to develop this specialty in NC.
- How did you grow that interest/practice?
Attending the Sanet Seminars in San Diego, CA gave me the confidence to broaden the scope of patients I treat through our vision therapy program. Through the seminars in 2013, my passion to grow our practice and address this unmet need really formed.
- What made you decide to pursue certification through COVD?
I knew this was the next step in being the best doctor I could possibly be for my patients and my staff. Fellows expressed the importance of the process in their personal education. I also wanted my vision therapists to pursue certification and myself to have the opportunity down the road to have externs and residents at our practice. And I can’t teach what I haven’t learned!
- What was your biggest hurdle in the certification process?
Writing the papers!
- How or with whose help did you overcome that hurdle?
One of the things I did was dedicate some weekends away during the summer strictly for writing the papers. It is hard to make them a priority when you have patients, staff and a practice to take care of. Dedicating a couple weekends to knocking out the open book questions and care reports helped me focus.
What have you learned?
- How have you grown?
I have a better understanding of why I diagnose and treat patients the way I do. If someone asked me to explain my thought process, I don’t think I could have done it well before going through the fellowship process. Now, I feel I can put reason behind my decisions, which will allow me to teach my staff and mentor others in the future.
- What will you bring back to your patients?
My very best.
- It’s not just about patient care, what else matters most to you in your practice/career?
Our practice makes it a priority to empower our staff. It is important to me that I pour into my vision therapy staff, so that this isn’t just a job to them. I want this to be their passion and their career, I want them to value what they do and have fun doing it!
What’s next for you?
Growing our Sports Vision Training and Post-Concussion Rehabilitation clinics!
There’s more to life than vision care…
- What other things are important to you?
I just got back from a Lions In Sight Vision Clinic in Valladolid, Mexico! I go on a trip once a year to provide eye care to those in need. This past trip was my 8th! I am also very active and enjoy stand-up paddle boarding, indoor cycling and running. I love spending time with my friends and family, eating, and traveling.
A huge thank-you to Dr. Miller for answering our questions (and sharing these awesome paddle boarding pics!) There will be more interviews like these in the coming weeks, stay tuned!