AOA member has a super role with NFL team
Bronson Hamada, O.D., at Los Angeles Rams training camp in 2017. Pictured, from left to right, are his daughter Sophie, wife Jocelyn, Dr. Hamada, daughter Lili and son Brian.
Ahead of Sunday's big game, the AOA teamed up with Bronson Hamada, O.D., owner of Surf City Optometry in Huntington Beach, California, who is director of vision performance for the Los Angeles Rams., to find out how optometry makes a difference for the team.
Will you be at game?
Yes, I'll be in the stands.
What will be your role officially?
Surf City Optometry is the vision performance provider for the Los Angeles Rams. I handle most aspects of vision care for the athletes, coaching and support staff for the LA Rams Organization. That encompasses anatomical, physiological and functional requirements, gathering relevant vision performance data that could impact an athlete's performance, refractive corrections for both on-field and off-the-field activities, specialty lens filters, specialty contact lenses, glare and dryness treatments, vision/perception/neuro-cognitive training, injury and more importantly injury prevention, medical eyecare, pharmaceutical and triage supplies, vision therapy, and concussion baseline testing.
How long have you worked with the team, and how did you get the job?
This is my third season. I have worked with the team since they relocated from St. Louis. The Rams were already incorporating vision training into their sports science methodology, so it was a great fit. They appreciated our sports vision expertise and what we could bring to the organization.
How important are doctors of optometry to the post-concussion team?
We did an in service where we worked with the staff to review vision-based concussion protocols, provocative tests, performance training and neuro-rehabilitation. I also gather data during pre-season physicals, but for the most part, the Rams medical and training staff take care of concussions and are extraordinary. The post-concussion team is multidisciplinary and incorporates the best practices from vision, medicine, sports science, rehabilitation and strength and conditioning. Recently emphasis has been placed on vision training during the pre-season to help with performance and also to facilitate quicker recovery when a concussion occurs during the season.
What kinds of eye injuries do you see beside concussions?
Corneal abrasions, dry eye, contact lens-related issues.
Although about 13% of the U.S. population is Black, they are woefully underrepresented in optometry. They represent about 2% of practicing doctors of optometry and a little over 3% of full-time students in optometry schools and colleges, according to studies. Black doctors of optometry seek to grow those numbers.
A crusader for vision and eye care in local, state and national communities, Patricia spread her love for the AOA across the country. The AOA sends condolences and thanks to the Hopping family for their years of service.
Learn how you can apply or nominate a doctor of optometry for the 2024 AOA Leadership Institute.