Optometrists held about 34,800 jobs in 2008. Salaried jobs for optometrists were primarily in offices of optometrists; offices of physicians, including ophthalmologists; and health and personal care stores, including optical goods stores. A few salaried jobs for optometrists were in hospitals, the Federal Government, or outpatient care centers, including health maintenance organizations. About 25 percent of optometrists are self-employed. According to a 2008 survey by the American Optometric Association, most self-employed optometrists worked in private practice or in partnership with other healthcare professionals. A small number worked for optical chains or franchises or as independent contractors.
Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition