Monnow Eyecare team welcome new optometrist, Andrew Hickey.
Canadian Andrew will be joining the Monnow Eyecare team, working part time in June and then full time in August, once he’s had a visit home. He has just completed his dissertation at Cardiff University. In the next couple of weeks, Andrew will be completing his final exams, which will involve seeing a variety of patients with many different eye conditions.
Andrew comes from a large family - four boys and one girl - and both his father and one of his brothers are optometrists. He decided to come to Cardiff to study rather than attend the one University in Canada that offers degrees in optometry because it opened new opportunities to travel in the UK and in Europe. Most Canadian optometrists have undertaken their studies in America. He talked to practitioners in Canada about training and a few of them recommended Cardiff. When not studying, he’s particularly enjoyed visits to Spain and likes to get outdoors as much as possible.
Andrew used to help in the New Brunswick family business by setting up visual field or OCT scans for patients in his dad’s practice and occasionally he would get to help with the accounting side of running the business. “As well as being a good career, there is always something new to learn as developments in technology evolve” says Andrew “I really enjoyed my studies at Cardiff”. Andrew’s final year dissertation, which he finished writing at the end of March, was comparing the different methods that can be used to detect early signs of glaucoma. This is important because glaucoma causes damage to the optic nerve which develops gradually over many years, so sometimes patients only notice when they start to lose their sight. Earlier detection means further sight loss can be prevented with either medication or surgery.
Andrew has swapped his previous sports of American Football and Ice Hockey. He plays with the Cardiff Hurricanes in the British American Flag Football league, which is like American football but without the rough physical contact, in competitions around the UK. Andrew confesses to being quite a competitive person and he’s also a keen runner.
Andrew is looking forward to developing his passion for eye care further in is pre-reg year as part of the friendly team at Monnow.