As Eye See It

3 Tips for Using Your VSP Practice Report

Monday, April 7, 2014

Well, it’s that time of year again. Spring has sprung! Here in Oregon, that means rain—but just think of all the green that follows. My feet are a little muddy, but summer is straight ahead. There is no question about it, time for optimism!

What about your practice? Have you done any spring cleaning? Have you made changes to improve practice performance? Are you being guided by statistics or by intuition alone?

I have great news: The VSP Practice Report is now available. It is chock-full of important information about your practice…comparative data, three-year trends, and revenue opportunities. It truly is an excellent resource and provides a basis for identifying areas of opportunity in our practices.

Here are three tips for using the VSP Practice Report:

  1. Take a look at your patient demographics. More kids? More women? Age breakdown? Is your patient mix changing? This is very helpful information in frame board management and in assessing the look and feel of our offices. (more…)

We See Brings Access to Eye Health in Soweto

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Third-generation optometrist and VSP Global Chairman of Optometric Innovation Matthew Alpert, OD, of Alpert Vision Care and Wink Optometry guests this week.

In 2012, I was part of a team that traveled to Soweto, South Africa—hometown of Nelson Mandela—to provide free eye exams and eyewear to nearly 200 staff members and students from a local school at the Nike Football Training Centre.

Just 230 optometrists in the public health sector of South Africa serve a population of 41 million. An estimated 6 out of 10 children in South Africa who have low vision need vision correction, yet only 20% of those children have the glasses they need.

This really hit home for me during an eye exam for a young girl who had vision so poor, anything past an arm’s length was blurred. She didn’t realize that seeing clearly was possible. Now that she has corrective glasses and can see the blackboard in school, she has a much better chance of achieving her dreams of being a doctor.

Next week, as part of the We See Child Eye Health Project, I’m returning to Soweto to celebrate the opening of a new eye health clinic.


Eye Exams: A Powerful Tool for Overall Health

Friday, March 7, 2014

This week’s post is written by Stephanie Kirschbaum, OD, a private-practice optometrist in Grass Valley, Calif., and VSP Professional Representative.

Have you heard this recently? “I haven’t come in for an eye exam because I don’t need new glasses.”

As eye doctors, we know that annual eye exams are as important for overall health as they are for vision correction. Now, a new study* is making it easier to explain the importance to patients and others in our communities.

The study found that those who receive an annual comprehensive eye exam are more likely to enter the healthcare system earlier for treatment of serious health conditions, significantly reducing their long-term cost of care.

One of the most exciting findings is that eye doctors often detect early signs of chronic diseases before any other healthcare provider. In fact, they were first to detect:

  • diabetes 34% of the time,
  • high blood pressure 39% of the time,
  • high cholesterol 62% of the time.

I’ve experienced this in my own practice. A woman called about her husband who was in his forties and frightened that he was going blind, threatening a career that required driving long distances. During his eye exam, I discovered diabetic retinopathy and immediately referred him to his primary care physician and a retinal specialist. Without a timely eye exam, his vision AND his life could have been irreparably damaged.