About the College of Optometrists of Ontario

Optometry has been a regulated profession in Ontario since 1919. The College of Optometrists of Ontario is the self-regulatory authority responsible for registering (licensing) and governing optometrists in Ontario. The College’s authority and limitations of its powers can be found in legislation including the Regulated Health Professions Act  and the Optometry Act.

Mission, Vision, & Values

Vision: To ensure that the public understands, trusts, and has confidence in optometrists.

Mission: To regulate Ontario’s doctors of optometry in the public interest.


  1. Approachability
  2. Integrity
  3. Transparency
  4. Accountability
  5. Collaboration
  6. Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Our Responsibility is to the Public of Ontario

The College has the legislated duty to protect the public interest. There are a number of ways we ensure that optometrists provide quality patient care that meets the standards of practice, including:

  • setting the qualifications required to enter practice;
  • setting the conditions to maintain registration;
  • developing quality assurance programs to promote clinical excellence;
  • promoting safe and ethical practice by our members;
  • developing professional and ethical standards and guidelines; and
  • responding openly, fairly and with authority when complaints arise.

If an individual has a problem of any kind with their optometrist or the care they have received, the College is here to help. All complaints are dealt with confidentially and both optometrists and their patients are treated with respect. Solutions are reached which provide fair treatment for patients and opportunities for learning and improvement for optometrists. When appropriate, the College will discipline a member who breaches a regulation or fails to maintain the profession’s standards for practice or behaviour.