Coronavirus BRIEFING
Supported by Essilor

Organizers of opti 2022 Anticipate Four-Hall Show Navigation, YES Area for Independent Brands, Awards and New opti FORUMNxt for Live Event Jan 14-16

By Staff
Friday, October 15, 2021 12:21 AM MUNICH—The organizers of opti 2022, to be held Jan. 14-16, 2022 at the Munich Fairgrounds, stated they are "focused on the essentials," for the show which will return to its four-hall concept and an in-person event, a return since the show's cancellation in January 2021 due to COVID-19.

On World Sight Day, Millions Take #LoveYourEyes Pledge, EssilorLuxottica Launches PutVisionFirst Website, CooperVision Highlights Myopia and J&J Shares 2nd Global Eye Health Survey

By Staff
Thursday, October 14, 2021 12:24 AM NEW YORK—The 21st anniversary of World Sight Day has arrived and today, Oct. 14, millions around the world have pledged to support the global #LoveYourEyes campaign designed to build awareness for the need for eyecare and access to adequate eyewear for more than one billion people. As of VMAIL's deadline, the International Agency to Prevent Blindness (IAPB) reported that more than three million people have committed to get sight tests for World Sight Day as the global pandemic takes a toll on global vision. Eye tests have been carried out at landmarks around the world including Mount Everest, Gateway to India, Santa Barbara beach, Tower Bridge, and more to raise awareness.

National Average for Gross Revenue at ECP Locations Decreased for Week of Oct. 4-10, Jobson’s Latest Practice Performance Tracker Shows

By Staff
Thursday, October 14, 2021 12:21 AM NEW YORK—The national average for gross revenue at ECP locations decreased last week, Oct. 4-10, at a rate of -1 index point. That leaves gross revenue 5 index points above where it was at this point in time (Week 41) during 2019 and 6 index points below where it was during Week 41 of last year, according to Jobson’s most recent Practice Performance Tracker. U.S. optical sales were either flat or down slightly last week at rates ranging from 0 to -3 index points.

The New Jobs Numbers Are Pretty Good, Actually

By Staff
Thursday, October 14, 2021 12:04 AM [The drop in the unemployment rate] represents a remarkably speedy recovery in the labor market—attaining sub-5 percent unemployment a mere 17 months after the end of the deepest recession in modern times. By contrast, in the aftermath of the global financial crisis, the jobless rate did not reach 4.8 percent until January 2016, six and a half years after the technical end of that recession.

Halloween Spending Soars as Celebrations Near Pre-Pandemic Levels, NRF Says

By Staff
Wednesday, October 13, 2021 5:23 PM WASHINGTON—Consumer spending on Halloween-related items is expected to reach an all-time high of $10.14 billion, up from $8.05 billion in 2020, according to the National Retail Federation’s annual survey conducted by Prosper Insights & Analytics. Plans to celebrate Halloween are up this year compared with last and are close to pre-pandemic levels.

“Americans plan to spend more than ever to make this Halloween a memorable one,” NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay said. “Retailers have implemented a number of measures, such as bringing in Halloween products earlier than normal, to ensure their shelves are stocked with seasonal candy, décor and other items ahead of this important holiday.”

An estimated 65 percent of Americans intend to celebrate Halloween or participate in Halloween activities this year, up from 58 percent in 2020 and comparable with 68 percent in 2019 before the COVID-19 pandemic. Households with children are much more likely to celebrate Halloween (82 percent) than those without (55 percent).

The top ways consumers are planning to celebrate include handing out candy (66 percent), decorating their home or yard (52 percent), dressing in costumes (46 percent), carving a pumpkin (44 percent) and hosting or attending a party (25 percent).

With more Americans celebrating Halloween this year, average spending is also up. On average consumers plan to spend $102.74 on costumes, candy, decorations and greeting cards—$10 more than they planned to spend last year. Click here to read the full story from the NRF.

CooperVision Launches New Myopia Education Campaign for U.S. Parents

By Staff
Wednesday, October 13, 2021 12:27 AM SAN RAMON, Calif.—CooperVision, a leader in myopia management, announced a new U.S. education initiative called “Take Control: Myopia & You” to increase awareness of the disease and encourage parents to schedule eye exams for their young children. Childhood myopia has been increasing in prevalence and severity in recent decades, a trend that may have been exacerbated by increased time spent on screens and other “near work” indoors during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, according to the company’s announcement Tuesday.

The Vision Council Reports Industry’s Q2 2021 Sales Hit $10.7 Billion, Up 3.3 Percent Over 2019

By Staff
Wednesday, October 13, 2021 12:24 AM ALEXANDRIA, Va.—Sales revenue for the vision correction industry is returning to pre-pandemic levels, according to The Vision Council’s newly released VisionWatch market research reports for Q2 of 2021.

3 Reasons There's a Labor Shortage, According to Biden's Labor Secretary

By Staff
Wednesday, October 13, 2021 12:04 AM I've talked to a lot of businesses that have said some people have just decided to walk away from the industry they're working in, and they're thinking about what's next for them. So I think that the work-life balance has played a big role in this.

New Trends in the Optical Industry

By Staff
Wednesday, October 13, 2021 12:02 AM The pandemic has changed purchasing habits, and retailers have been obliged to create a new customer experience, with a blend of on-line and off-line shopping. Despite this evolution, more traditional stores are hardly disappearing.

Staying Safe This Halloween

By Staff
Tuesday, October 12, 2021 11:28 AM Halloween is here, and, while things might not be as dire as they were this time last year in the U.S., the COVID-19 risk hasn't disappeared. Head over to ABC News to hear from WebMD's John Whyte, MD, and get some tips for having a fun and safe Halloween 2021.

Depression Rates Up Threefold Since Start of COVID-19

By Staff
Tuesday, October 12, 2021 9:07 AM A year into the COVID-19 pandemic, the share of the U.S. adult population reporting symptoms of elevated depression had more than tripled from pre-pandemic levels and worsened significantly since restrictions went into effect, a study of more than 1,000 adults surveyed at the start of the pandemic and one year into it has reported.

Wide-Ranging VM Summit Programs Tackle Consumer Trust, Remote Patient Monitoring, Fresh Retail Concepts and the Metaverse

By Staff
Tuesday, October 12, 2021 12:27 AM NEW YORK—There's still time to register for the next virtual Vision Monday Leadership Summit sessions, the latest in the 2021 series, which will take place on Oct. 20 and Oct. 27. These two dynamic sessions will bring together a range of speakers from outside the industry and within the eyecare and optical retail space who will examine how the global pandemic has rewritten the fundamental rules of customer/patient engagement for both retailers and healthcare providers. The upcoming sessions, themed "Retail and Healthcare: UPENDED! Ripping Up the Rulebook," will be broadcast initially from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. EST on those dates via a unique VM Summit virtual platform.

California Approves Expanded Scope of Practice Legislation That California Optometric Association Had Supported

By Staff
Tuesday, October 12, 2021 12:24 AM SACRAMENTO, Calif.—Two bills signed into law recently by Calif. Gov. Gavin Newsom will expand the scope of practice for optometrists in the state, according to a recent announcement by the California Optometric Association (COA).

Kaiser Family Foundation COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor: September 2021

By Staff
Tuesday, October 12, 2021 12:04 AM The public appears resigned to a future in which COVID-19 remains present in the U.S. and is managed much like the seasonal flu rather than one in which the disease is completely eliminated. Eight in ten (79%) believe COVID-19 is something the U.S. will learn to live with.

U.S. Has Highest Weekly Vaccinations Since Early July

By Staff
Monday, October 11, 2021 8:03 AM The U.S. administered the highest number of weekly COVID-19 vaccinations during the past week since early July. More than 7 million doses were given throughout the week.