IcareLabs Blog

Optical Trends and Recommendations for 2016

Jan 20, 2016 4:58:10 PM

Trends for the Optical Industry

Though sales were up for ECPs in 2015, there are 1,000 locations nationwide closing every year. Private Practice Eye Care Providers (PPECPs) are losing 2-4% of their market share each year to the corporate optical ‘big box’ retailers. The PPECPs provide 65% of the eye exams but, sell 39% of the eyewear. How do you gain more of those sales and not let them walk out your door?

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Helping Your Low Vision Patients

Dec 2, 2015 4:02:53 PM

There is a growing category in the optical business that is somewhat disregarded and certainly somewhat misunderstood. One in 28 Americans age 40 and above suffers with low vision. That number will grow over the next 20 years due to the fact that approximately 10,000 baby boomers turn 65 every day. It is estimated that more than 39 million Americans have low vision or a disorder that can lead to it.

Eyecare Business Magazine first referred to low vision as “the most underserved category in optical” back in the early ‘90s. Twenty years later, not much has changed except that the growing number of patients who suffer has increased as the population increases.

These patients, for the most part, are being told that “nothing can be done” or they’re not being seen at all. While it’s true that there is no cure, there are solutions that can help people improve quality of life, such as daily living aids, low vision devices and sophisticated spectacles.

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Vision Supplements for Your Patients

Aug 14, 2015 2:37:00 PM

There is an abundance of research available on how taking vitamin and mineral supplements to improve our health and energy level. One issue that is of particular interest to eye care professionals is improving eye health through supplements. And, one question that keeps coming up is how can supplementation help with eye health overall. There are some eyeglass stores that promote eye health supplements to their patients. If you don’t, perhaps this information will be helpful and might inspire you to do some research on your own.

It All Starts With A Healthy Diet

As the name itself implies, taking supplements are to go along with a healthy diet. No amount of dietary supplementation can provide all the nutrition a body needs to be healthy. Poor diets and unreasonable amounts of junk food are associated with many serious health issues, including vision loss. On the other hand, there is some research that indicates certain vitamins and nutrients can be beneficial for maintaining eye health and good vision.

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Eye Care Professionals Affiliating With Helpful Causes

Aug 10, 2015 10:00:00 AM

As optical professionals, it is important to affiliate yourself and your business with organizations that touch your local community as well as people at national level. A person running a business and taking care of patients full time cannot get involved with every national or local good cause organization out there. There are choices you can make to narrow down where you contribute your time and money to.

As you review an organization, look into what have they done within your local community. Prevent Blindness.org is a national non-profit organization that has coordinated events, medical information and collateral to help your business bring attention to a good cause. There are opportunities for you to promote support for Prevent Blindness. Your office can show your customers that you are supporting their community. Find out through local organizations, churches or schools what local need there is to help.

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Laws Prevent Managed Care Companies from Requiring ODs to Use Labs

Aug 6, 2015 1:43:00 PM

Other states passed laws previously forbidding Managed Care Insurance Companies requiring eye doctors to use their labs. Now, Texas joined them in June, 2015 as Texas Governor, Greg Abbott signed Senate Bill 684 (Click hereinto law.

This Texas law allows private optometric practioners to fulfil patient’s eyeglass prescription for their lab of choice, instead of being forced to use the managed vision care company lab. The law goes into effect in September 2015. Contracts entered into or renewed on September 1, 2015 and after the date will be covered by this law.

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