David Heitmeier, Louisiana’s First OD State Senator, Joins Keplr Vision

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BLOOMINGTON, Ill.—Keplr Vision, an operating group formed in mid-2019 to support eyecare practices, announced that it has partnered with Dr. David Heitmeier. Dr. Heitmeier has been recognized with numerous awards for his service to optometry, including the University of Houston College of Optometry’s (UHCO) Distinguished Alumnus Award, the Southern Council of Optometrists’ OD of the South Award, and the 2015 AOA National Optometrist of the Year, according to the announcement this week. The partnership was effective as of February.

An influential industry and civic leader, Dr. Heitmeier founded Heitmeier & Armani - Medical and Surgical Eyecare in New Orleans shortly after completing his education with a doctorate in optometry in 1987 from the University of Houston.

In 2007, Dr. Heitmeier became the first OD elected to serve in the Louisiana State Senate. During his term of service, he was instrumental in authoring numerous pieces of legislation in support of the optometric industry, including one that allowed optometrists to prescribe pharmaceutical contact lenses, according to the Keplr announcement.

He is considered the driving force behind Louisiana's historic 2014 scope of practice bill that reinforced the power of the state board of optometry and allowed doctors of optometry to perform ophthalmic laser and lid surgeries and administer injections.

Dr. Ben Gaddie, Keplr Vision’s chief medical officer, described Dr. Heitmeier as “a true leader in optometry.” He added, “Senator Heitmeier made us all proud with his legislative leadership in Louisiana and beyond. We look forward to his contributions to Keplr and are honored to have him on our team.”

Heitmeier & Armani - Medical and Surgical Eyecare offers complete optometric and ophthalmologic care, including specialties in the clinical and surgical care of glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy.

“Ensuring that those in my field can provide the highest quality and most advanced optometric care to our patients has always been a core value of mine,” Dr. Heitmeier said. “I know that my partnership with Keplr not only allows me to continue that legacy but also strengthen the impact we can all make together.”

Keplr Vision was formed last year when the Canadian private equity firm Imperial Capital brought two of its portfolio companies—Total ECP and Visionary Eye Partners—under common ownership, as VMAIL reported

With more than 140 practices across more than 25 states, Keplr Vision works to bring together private practice optometrists who focus on medical optometry. Through a collaborative partnership, Keplr offers OD partners robust business support services and supply chain management, allowing ODs to focus on their practice and their patients while retaining their legacy, the firm noted.