Here’s How a Few Optical Industry Colleagues Are Spending Their Summer Vacation

By Staff
Monday, June 24, 2019 5:51 PM As of about midday on June 21, we officially began the summer season of 2019. So, basically, what this means is that if you haven’t already scheduled an amazing summer adventure, then you’ve missed out on the best beach rentals, the hot summer shows and much of the off-peak visiting times for just about every national park. But it seems the majority of Americans are very good at planning ahead when it comes to summer travel. According to AAA, about four in 10 U.S. adults are expecting to take a family trip. This is slightly more than last year, and why wouldn’t it be since the economy is still humming along and unemployment is at or near record lows. To get a sense of what colleagues in the optical business have planned, we asked a few people to let us in on their summer vacation plans. Here’s what we found out. Read More.

Review of Ophthalmology: Easing Your Patients’ Financial Burden

By Staff
Monday, June 24, 2019 5:48 PM Every ophthalmologist treating glaucoma knows that patients have problems with compliance and adherence, and it’s no secret that a lot of this is tied to the cost of treatment. In one study of patient/doctor communication over a series of glaucoma visits, a patient said (on camera), “Sometimes I forget [to buy the drops] purposely, because they’re so darned expensive. I figure if I use them half as much, I’ll only pay half the money.” There are actually a number of ways to reduce the cost of the medications patients have to purchase, but this fact is rarely discussed when patients are in the clinic. Here are nine ways you can help your patients reduce the costs associated with glaucoma treatment. Read More.

Alcon's New Social Media Campaign Helps Cataract Patients Better Understand Treatment Options

By Staff
Monday, June 24, 2019 3:55 PM FORT WORTH, Texas—Alcon has launched a digital campaign, “See What You’re Missing,” to empower people to overcome the “FOMO” (fear of missing out) that can be associated with living with cataracts, according to an announcement last week. The campaign, launched during Cataract Awareness Month, “will arm millions of Americans with information to help on their journey from cataract diagnosis to treatment,” Alcon said. The efforts are part of an existing multi-year “My Cataracts” educational initiative, and will be included on the My Cataracts Facebook page. Alcon said the campaign is based on findings from a recent survey that showed people with cataracts reporting that they feel less independent, more fearful and frustrated about missing out on things that bring them joy. Read More.

Review of Optometric Business: What I’ve Learned & Why I Still Don’t Want to Sell to Private Equity

By Staff
Monday, June 24, 2019 3:52 PM Almost a year ago I wrote a piece in this publication on my feelings about selling a practice to a private-equity-backed buyer. I was against it at the time for me. My feelings have not changed much since then, but I have taken my exploration further by listening to several private equity firms give their pitch for selling a practice to them. My partners and I have even hired an outside consultant to evaluate our practice and “shop” it to several private equity firms. I would like to share with you what I have learned in the process, and offer guidelines for determining the best PE-backed companies to sell to. Read more about Dr. Ken Krivacic’s advice on selling your practice (or not) to a PE buyer in this feature from Review of Optometric Business. Read More.

Everyone Is Looking to Elton John for Eyewear Inspiration

By Staff
Friday, June 21, 2019 3:40 PM NEW YORK—Musician-inspired celebrity biopics have been all the rage recently. The trend started with "Bohemian Rhapsody," and is escalating even higher with "Rocketman," as VM noted in this feature. "Rocketman" tells the story of Elton John’s career and stars Taron Egerton. The film was produced, in part, by John himself. John’s career has been eye-catching for a multitude of reasons—including his fantastical, over the top, trendsetting eyewear decisions. John has long been the king of campy eyewear, and of using his eyewear both to complete a look and make a statement. And now, "Rocketman" has reminded many of us just how incredible John’s optical looks were. In conjunction with "Rocketman’s" release, many optical brands, optical fans and independents have been sharing their optical looks, which were inspired by Elton. Here are a few of our favorites. Read More.

Women In Optometry: One Volunteer Role Opens the Door to Another...and Another...and Another

By Staff
Friday, June 21, 2019 3:37 PM Barbara Horn, OD, a diplomate in the American Board of Optometry, recalls that in her very first week as a student at Michigan College of Optometry at Ferris State University, she needed a subject she could discuss for 10 minutes. “I picked the alphabet soup of organized optometry: AOA, AOSA, AAO, ARBO, ASCO—and those are just some of the letter A. They were all initially confusing to me,” she says. “As I was preparing, I realized how critical each one was to optometry, as each represented different aspects within our profession. However, only one of those organizations safeguards and advances the profession, allowing us to practice the way we do today.” At that moment, she became forever devoted to the American Optometric Association (AOA) and its affiliates, not envisioning that the mentorship and help she gained along the way would one day lead her to become the new AOA president. Read More.

Versant Health: Making Investments for Superior Vision and Davis Stakeholders

By Staff
Thursday, June 20, 2019 3:04 PM BALTIMORE—It’s been a busy first year for the managed vision care company Versant Health. Created by the merger of Davis Vision and Superior Vision in late 2017, Versant Health debuted as the corporate name for the “new” company in May 2018 and, after hitting the ground quickly, the company has continued to work at a steady pace to invest and reshape itself as an adept competitor in the managed vision care space over the past 12 months. The increased investment was made possible, in part, because of the greater size and scale of the combined company. “Superior was a small company and it had limited resources,” Versant Health chief executive officer Kirk Rothrock told Vision Monday in a recent interview. “When we put the companies together with 33 million members it gave us more resources, more influence and more funding to invest in the routine kinds of things that make our business run.” Read More.

20/20 Europe: Okia Commits to a More Sustainable Future

By Staff
Thursday, June 20, 2019 3:01 PM Okia—the Hong Kong-based eyewear company for its patented HDA Technology—continues in its efforts to build a more sustainable future for the eyewear industry. To increase customers’ sensitivity to nature and draw attention to eco-friendly products, Okia has launched www.sustainability.okia.com, dedicated to green solutions. The properties and advantages of each sustainable product by Okia are illustrated in detail using new graphics and in combination with facts and figures about worldwide pollution. The site offers interesting tips about how to try to make the world better and save the environment. Read more about the company’s sustainability efforts in this feature from 20/20 Europe. Read More.

It’s All About the Relationships for Belmont Eye’s Husband and Wife Team

By Staff
Wednesday, June 19, 2019 2:44 PM BELMONT, North Carolina—It’s been two years since husband and wife team Brad and Rachael Wruble, ODs, took the plunge and opened Belmont Eye, an independent practice located here. Michigan natives who met and fell in love while pursuing their degrees at Michigan College of Optometry at Ferris State University, Drs. Wruble moved south in 2010 after completing their residencies, when Rachael landed a job in Gastonia, North Carolina. Now, the couple are well established as a local, family-oriented independent practice—but it wasn’t always this smooth going. “I think we have always wanted to have our own office together, it just took a few years with a few roadblocks and a few lucky opportunities,” Dr. Brad Wruble told VM. Read More.

20/20 Magazine: Jobs at the Speed of Light—High-Efficiency Ordering With VisionWeb

By Staff
Wednesday, June 19, 2019 2:41 PM During my second year as an optician, our office signed up with a lab to handle a particular type of specialty job. This lab was considered one of the best in the Continental United States for handling this specific order, and came highly recommended to us by a number of frame reps and experienced opticians. Their testimonials were backed up by the jobs we got back: They were well made, the lab had a quick turnaround time, and we had a high satisfaction rate with our patients. There was only one drawback: The lab required paper orders to be filled out by hand. As an optician I believe that the most valuable thing you can make an investment in is time and the software tools that can give it back to you. Read More.

Style.Pages: Underlined

By Staff
Monday, June 17, 2019 5:04 PM While semi-rimless looks aren’t always for everyone, these styles showcase the reverse of the traditional semi-rimless construction by adding an unexpected, fashion-forward twist. These underlined styles show off an extra edge, drawing the eye to its unconventional appeal. This partially rimless style features the rim at the bottom of the frame front with the top of the style remaining rimless or one that shows off the rim’s construction in an unconventional manner. Examples of these styles from Marchon, Luxottica and Kering are highlighted in this month’s edition of Style.Pages. Read More.

Review of Optometry: Let's Get Medical

By Staff
Monday, June 17, 2019 5:01 PM Despite the growing need for medical eyecare services, more than 70 percent of the average optometrist’s income still comes from goods and services related to glasses and contact lenses. But challenges from online vendors and the advent of virtual or automated vision screenings will make it increasingly difficult to succeed at this model. Meanwhile, the demand for medical eyecare services is expanding at a rate nearly three times that of comprehensive eye exams. Someone must care for these patients and, in many cases, this responsibility is ours. Review of Optometry’s Paul Karpecki, OD, believes this is the year to embrace medical optometry or even consider a specialty. Read More.

SUNY Optometry Honors Essilor’s Sagnieres and Columbia’s Hood

By Staff
Monday, June 17, 2019 2:14 PM NEW YORK—SUNY Optometry held its 45th commencement ceremony last month. Students, parents, friends, the Optometric Foundation of New York board and other guests gathered at the Roosevelt Hotel to witness the College grant the OD, PhD and MS in vision science and advanced certificate in optometry business management. SUNY Optometry president David A. Heath, OD, noted that the opportunities within optometry and vision science are numerous and the Class of 2019 has been well prepared for professional success and personal satisfaction. Hubert Sagnieres, chairman of the Essilor Group and executive vice chairman of EssilorLuxottica, and Dr. Donald Hood, professor of psychology and professor of ophthalmic science at Columbia University, both received honorary degrees during the ceremony. Read More.

Review of Optometric Business: What Yearly Road Trips to Visit Other Practices Have Taught Me

By Staff
Monday, June 17, 2019 2:11 PM I have long believed that peer-to-peer is the most effective way to learn. I have always enjoyed stopping by offices to observe how others in our profession are serving patients and growing profitability. I like to see other offices from an outside point of view. Here’s what a yearly road trip to visit other practices, most LensCrafters independent subleases like my own five-location practice, teaches me about providing a topnotch patient experience. Seeing, smelling, hearing and feeling what another office is like gives you a unique prospective. We use patient reviews to see what our office strengths and weaknesses are, but what do other optometrists do that could improve my offices? Read More.

Anticipating the Rapidly-Advancing Wave of Ocular Telehealth

By Staff
Friday, June 14, 2019 2:51 PM Disruptions. They are facilitated by technology and by inventors taking a fresh look at new business models and professional concepts. They are often shaped by consumers’ dramatically shifting interests and frustrations with the status quo. They are embraced by insiders who sense new potential. However, disruptions are often unwelcomed by legacy stakeholders. These issues are being brought to the forefront throughout the professional and business arenas by the new frontier of ocular telemedicine, also referred to as ocular telehealth. As Andrew Karp, our group editor of lenses and technology so keenly and specifically lays out in this month’s MEGATREND feature on the topic, ocular telemedicine or ocular telehealth currently “create a dynamic but fragmented market in which different business models and service offerings compete for consumer dollars and buy-in from ECPs.” Read More.