Independents Get Educational for #WorldGlaucomaWeek

By Staff
Friday, March 20, 2020 12:24 PM NEW YORK—Last week (March 8—14, 2020) was World Glaucoma Week. A global initiative headed up by the World Glaucoma Association (WGA) and the World Glaucoma Patient Committee (WGP), World Glaucoma Week aims to raise awareness around glaucoma, who it can affect and how it can affect them. Although many of us in the industry feel well educated about glaucoma, that doesn’t mean our neighbors and patients feel the same way—and with more than 3.2 million Americans ages 40 and over affected by glaucoma according to Prevent Blindness, there can never be too much information about the sneak thief of sight.

Yes, Wash Your Hands—But Enough of ‘Happy Birthday’

By Gwendolyn Plummer
Friday, March 13, 2020 12:32 PM NEW YORK—Let’s be honest: standing at the sink and washing your hands for 20 seconds can get boring pretty fast. Expert advice has told us to sing Happy Birthday twice in a row to ensure we’re hitting the full 20 second mark and protecting ourselves from COVID-19 as best as possible, but Happy Birthday can be sung in a few different tempos, which makes that advice a little confusing. On top of all that, the song can turn into an earworm pretty quickly—and, potentially, ruin all future birthdays by making us think back on this scary, uncertain time. 

#DollyPartonChallenge Inspires Indies to Show Their Many Sides

By Staff
Friday, February 21, 2020 1:41 PM NEW YORK—If you were on social media at all last month, you’ve probably noticed the Dolly Parton Challenge taking over your feed. The meme challenge—in which users share four different pictures of themselves to represent their different personalities on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn—kicked off when the country star shared her own interpretation of it, and it took the internet by storm. Actors, musicians, athletes and other public figures all across the world have been sharing their own Dolly Parton Challenges, but the fun doesn’t stop there: the optical industry has also taken the challenge. Here’s a look at a handful of Dolly Parton Challenges from independents that prove just how many sides there are to independents—and just how much you can change up your look by swapping out your eyewear.

Independents Take to Instagram to Celebrate Chinese New Year

By Staff
Friday, February 7, 2020 11:27 AM NEW YORK—January 25, 2020 marked the beginning of a new year on the traditional Chinese calendar, which also signals the beginning of a Lunar New Year. In 2020, we’re celebrating the Year of the Rat. The rat is the first of the zodiac animals, and can represent the beginning of a day, wealth and surplus, according to For millions of people around the world, Chinese and Lunar New Year mark a time to come together with family, friends and loved ones to wish the old year goodbye and celebrate the dawn of a new one. This year, many independents also shared New Year wishes on their social media accounts.

How to Use Social Media to Promote Vision Therapy

By By Miki Lyn Zilnicki, OD, FCOVD,
and Jessica Fulmer, OD, FAAO, FCOVD

Friday, January 17, 2020 10:22 AM Social media is where many, if not most, of your patients spend vast amounts of personal time. You can leverage posts to sites like Facebook and Instagram to market to them where they already are, rather than hoping they open promotional e-mails or postal mail messages. Here’s how our practice, which has a vision therapy focus, and no optical retail business, uses social media to communicate with current, and prospective, patients.

The Best of Voices + Views for 2019

By Mary Kane
Thursday, December 26, 2019 3:46 PM Vision Monday started the Voices + Views department in VMAIL Weekend back in January of 2018. Voices + Views was originally conceived as a way for VM to cover ECPs who had a social media presence on blogs, vlogs and Instagram platforms. At the time, most of the V+V features were written by our associate editor Stephanie Sengwe. Stephanie left us in May of 2018 when she returned to graduate school to pursue a film career. However, she continued to write the Voices + Views features for us on a contributing editor basis, and we’re very happy she did. Through the years, Stephanie wrote over 50 ECP profiles for us in the Weekend Edition. Here are a few of her most popular V+V stories.

Jennifer Wademan Doubles Up on Her Online Presence With Instagram Page and Blog

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, November 1, 2019 11:25 AM Jennifer Wademan’s Instagram page is a carefully curated platform that is indicative of its purpose—to be a creative, yet educational and an informative outlet. While it mostly showcases Wademan’s life as an optometrist, the page also features glances into her private life as a mother and a wife.  Dr. Wademan is a bonafide veteran of the optometry field, with 11 years of professional experience.

Jenine Esmail, OD, Prioritizes Patient Education

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, October 18, 2019 8:00 AM For Dr. Jenine Esmail, patient education is often lacking in the people she interacts with. Often times, when people come into her exam room, they lack basic information about their eyes. For this reason, she has dedicated her Instagram page, DrJenineEsmail, to filling in those blanks. “One thing that I notice with most of my patients is that they have never actually received proper patient education, which is something I spend time on with each patient during their exam. The more they understand, the more we can prevent diseases and treat them correctly,” she told VMail Weekend.

New Kid on the Block, Caitlyn Mefford, Is No One Dimensional Doctor

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, October 11, 2019 9:49 AM Caitlyn Mefford, OD, may still be a rookie in the optometry field, but she is no novice when it comes to social media. A recent graduate of NSU Oklahoma College of Optometry, Mefford has only been practicing since August, but she’s been running her Instagram page since 2012, when the social media platform was still starting out as well. Today, the savvy millennial doctor is boasting close to 2,000 followers on the page, DrCaitlynMefford, and is using it as a way to showcase her day-to-day life as a new doctor and lover of life in general.

Dr.EyeGotThis: Rachael Wruble, OD, Is All About Getting the Job Done

By Stephanie Sengwe
Thursday, October 3, 2019 3:43 PM To say that doctors are busy is an understatement. Between seeing patients, running a business, and also managing a life outside of work, their schedules can be hectic. For Rachael Wruble, however, a busy schedule is just par for the course. A native of Bad Axe, MI, Wruble is co-owner of three practices in the Charlotte, NC area—one of which she runs with her husband whom she’s been married to for nine years. As if that wasn’t enough, Wruble and her husband share two toddlers—both under five. In-between all that she has managed to create a strong presence on social media with Dr.EyeGotThis, an Instagram page she rebranded from personal to professional in February this year.

Damaris Raymondi, OD, Spreads the Word About Eye Health

By Staff
Wednesday, September 18, 2019 8:00 AM NEW YORK—Damaris Raymondi, OD, is a graduate of the SUNY College of Optometry, who has been practicing in New York since 2015. Born to Peruvian parents, Raymondi has dedicated her professional life to reach people beyond her examination room. A volunteer and advocate for Sights on Health—a non-profit that goes to Peru to provide free medical care and eyecare—Raymondi has also incorporated volunteerism as part of her core practices. For those she cannot be in contact with physically, she has her Instagram page, New York Eye Doc, which educates followers on everything from eye conditions to optometric equipment.

Haley Perry OD, Gets Real About the ‘Mom Hustle’ on Her IG

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, September 13, 2019 8:00 AM ASHEVILLE, N.C.—While Instagram can be a great source for fostering relationships, the platform is a double-edged sword because it opens up your life to the opinions of the world. If people only know you from your page, the assumption is that your day-to-day life is exactly as it is online. While this concept can be a bit daunting, causing many to withdraw from social media or curate their content finely, for Haley Perry OD, it is the thing that motivates her. Her Instagram page, Haley A Perry OD, chronicles her very busy life as a business owner of elite Eye care in Asheville, N.C., and working mother. When it comes to the concept of “balancing it all” Perry is not shy in admitting there is no such thing. Instead, it’s about prioritizing and figuring out which task needs her attention the most.

Living Life in 2020 With Gabriela Olivares, OD

By By Stephanie Sengwe
Thursday, September 5, 2019 8:00 AM For Gabriela Olivares, life as an optometrist is not just about your job. The South Florida native promotes eye health on her page as well as overall wellness. While she encourages the general public to get their eyes checked, her Instagram page, LivingIn2020, is targeted toward her peers—engaging them in conditions she runs into in her practice and urging them to prioritize their own health as much as they prioritize their patients’. Livingin2020 was created in February 2017, in an effort to educate patients and also inspire other health care professionals to live what she calls a 20/20 lifestyle—a well-balanced life that incorporates work, regular exercise and healthy eating habits.

Teamwork Makes the Dream Work: Dr. Shalu Pal’s Instagram Page Is Emblematic of Her Jovial Team

By Stephanie Sengwe, Contributing Editor
Friday, August 30, 2019 8:00 AM TORONTO, Ontario—Going to the doctor’s office can be quite daunting to some. The experience can be impersonal, with practitioners who are matter of fact and impersonable. And let’s face it, the whole thing can culminate into a dire diagnosis. Shalu Pal and her team at Dr. Shalu Pal & Associates in Yorkville, Toronto, are aware of this and have made it a mission to give you major FOMO through their Instagram page, helmed by Pal herself. The page is a fun outlet for the practice, intended to lure you and curb your reservations about doctors and the often harrowing experience of being in an examination room.