ROCKVILLE, Md. – A new virtual conference specifically targeting the optometric market, called Seeing is Believing 2013, is being planned for Jan. 30-31, 2013. Its organizers say that the new event will utilize an advanced virtual reality conferencing software to deliver information and showcase products and services for attendees. The Seeing is Believing (SIB) conference will be aimed at teaching practitioners about the power of online tools, techniques and technology.

The conference has been conceptualized by practitioner Alan Glazier, OD  and Daniel Rostenne, president of EyeCarePro. The two are providing investment to fund the first year of operation of the Seeing is Believing event, Michael Porat, COO of EyeCarePro, told VMail. EyeCarePro has been chosen as the operations team behind the conference. The company will be responsible for all planning, design and logistics in coordination with the SIB Planning Board which includes Glazier and Porat as well as Angel Alvarez, CEO of ABBConcise, Neil Gailmard, OD, CEO of Prima Eye Group, Gary Gerber, OD, founder and CEO of The Power Practice, and Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD.

“We believe the timing is right to move some portion of optometric conferencing online,” reported Glazier. “We are seeing huge numbers of optometrists online on Facebook and other virtual environments because while there is a need for information and collaboration, travel away from the office is becoming economically more and more difficult for most practices.”

Seeing is Believing 2013 topics will focus on optometrists using online tools to advance their practices, attract and retain patients, and reduce costs. “This is happening in pockets through the optometric market, and we hope this conference really accelerates adoption of the use of technology as one important aspect of practice improvement,” stated Gerber, who added, “We are practicing what we preach with this conference by creating the highest value in the learning opportunities while doing it in the most cost efficient way possible.”

Porat also told VMail, “We are anticipating six program tracks including patient communication, practice management software, practice management techniques, and emarketing tools and techniques, along with tracks for industry support programs and membership groups.” He added, “Because there are six programs held simultaneously, we are holding the entire program twice. This will ensure that all attendees get to the sessions they wish to see. Additionally, we will be publishing the library of presentations after the conference event that can be downloaded in case there are presentations registrants wish to view again or perhaps missed.”

Further, Porat explained, “SIB will feature a virtual exhibition hall where attendees can see participating vendors and sponsored programs, access resources, have offline private meetings and video conferencing with booth staff or simply leave their name to be contacted at a later date. Attendees actually enter the booth, are greeted by staff and are free to browse the various materials and activities available. Also, we have created a special feature for membership groups that allows them to utilize the conference facilities for their own meetings during the conference. Each participating group will receive an ‘auditorium’ where their members can come for meetings, materials, and chat with colleagues.”

And finally, he said, SIB is providing a booth for optometric students to explore practice opportunities. “Doctors can stop by to pick up resumes, notify students their practice is seeking a doctor and interview students. Students will have a place to meet privately with doctors, exchange information and let practices know of their availability.”

More information about Seeing is Believing, including explanatory videos, is posted on and there is also a new Facebook page for the event, launched today at