I own a community eye care practice. I have noticed that some of the eye care specialists that work for me only recommend new glasses to patients when there has been a ‘significant’ change in prescription. I have spoken to them about other reasons for recommending new glasses but they don’t seem to follow my advice. Do you have any tips?
There are several reasons for recommending new glasses to patients. A significant change in prescription is only one of them. To ensure a prosperous practice it is important that all visual needs of patients are identified and recommendations made to ensure that all these needs are being met and the patient has optimum vision for all visual tasks as well as good fitting stylish glasses.
A recommendation is far more powerful when it comes from the person who has conducted the eye examination than when it comes from a retail assistant.
In order to ensure the prosperity and longevity of the practice it is important that new glasses with optimum lenses are recommended to all patients.
Here are the visual and cosmetic needs I consider after completing an eye examination.
Does the patient need a pair of glasses dedicated to a specific task? For example, if they have a pair of varifocals, do they need a separate single vision pair for detailed near work or TV where a larger viewing area would help the patient?
Does the patient need an extra pair? For example, does the patient need a pair of single-vision reading glasses in the living room and another pair in the bedroom?
Does the patient need a new pair of glasses because the current ones are poorly fitting and/or uncomfortable?
Does the patient need a thinner and lighter lens? Or a different type of multifocal?
Does the patient want a change in frame style?
Are the current lenses and/or frame in bad condition?
Does the patient need a photochromic or tinted lens or one with an anti-reflection coating?
And finally, does the patient need a new prescription?
Ask each patient what they do at work. Do they need office varifocals?
Ask each patient what they do for leisure. Do they need photochromic lenses for gardening? Do they need a single-vision pair for working/gaming on a computer? Do they need a pair for evening entertainment? Do they need a pair for sport?
Going through each of these in your mind when conducting the examination and during the summarising of your findings will help you identify all visual and style needs and allow you to help the patient maximise their visual performance.
No single pair of spectacles can fulfill all visual functions.