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Contact Lens during Covid-19

If there’s one thing we’ve all learned during the COVID-19 crisis, it’s that one of best ways to stay protected against the Coronavirus is to avoid touching our faces and washing our hands for at least 20 seconds.

We’ve also been advised to use alcohol-based hand sanitizers in situations where water and soap aren’t available as these are found to be quite effective in fighting off most germs.

People have started wearing glasses as opposed to contact lenses to avoid contracting the disease.

The AOA and doctors of optometry want the general public to know that contact lenses are perfectly safe and effective for millions of people. Here’s what you need to do to take proper care of your contact lenses and protect yourself from contracting the Coronavirus:

1. Don’t Touch Your Face While Inserting or Removing Lenses

It’s important to note that wearing contact lenses alone won’t give you COVID-19, but you should maintain good hygiene when you’re handling your lenses and avoid touching your face and eyes when you’re inserting or taking your lenses out.

2. Wash Your Hands Properly

It’s also necessary to wash your hands properly with soap and water and then dry them with clean and unused paper towels. You should do this right before inserting your contact lenses and right after removing them.

If you don’t have water and soap at hand, it’s advisable to use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Touching your face, including your nose, mouth, and eyes with unclean hands will spread germs and increase your risk of getting Coronavirus.

3. Disinfect Your Contact Lenses

You should also disinfect your contact lenses regularly. Dispose of your daily disposable contact lenses every evening or disinfect your two-week or monthly lenses as per the instructions provided to you by your doctor of optometry. If you’re feeling sick and showing COVID-19 symptoms, it’s best to stop wearing lenses.

People who are switching to glasses should note that glasses aren’t proven to provide protection against COVID-19 and other viruses.

4. Postpone New Contact lens fits

Offices should postpone new contact lens fits because of being close to the patients and handling of the lenses between the two parties.

Final Thoughts

You must avoid touching your eyes when you’re in high-risk places. If your eyes feel itchy, resist the temptation to rub them. It’s recommended to keep a cold compress or a bottle of artificial tears just in case.

Improving Your Contact Lens Capture Rate.

It’s time to start tracking the exam frequency of patients who wear contact lenses. You can use these numbers to improve your services and improve your contact lens capture rate in corporate optometry.

Industry Trends

If you want to be in the industry average, you need a contact-lens capture rate of more than 70%. You don’t want need patients to be walking out with a prescription ready to purchase online. And not just as a one-time purchase, tailor your services so well, they choose you every time! Doctor driven dispensing is a way to do so. Many corporate opticals will offer a discount on glasses if a patient buys a year supply of contacts.

Online Strategy

Online contact lens sales have increased over the years and will continue to rise. But with 40+ million contact lens users in America, practitioners still have a chance of capturing a significant share of the market. Think of opportunity that is out there. Patients are searching the web about contact lens information make it a strategy for them to land on your website. Consider taking the approach of scleral lenses or a medical model approach to contacts that is not presented by online retailers.

Offer Great Customer Service

As with all businesses, your customer is the livelihood of your business. Patient education is important to having the patient understand what services and quality you are offering. Provide discounts for yearly supplies with the rebates that the manufacturers offer. Break down the math to have to patient see what they are paying for when bought as a year supply what each box costs.

Make purchasing lenses easier for them. Offer a contact lens subscription for patients that want to have their expenses divided over months. Take care credit to have they pay their medical bills over longer periods of time. Providing more options with great customer service and convenience can help increase your contact lens capture rate.

Whichever strategy you choose, make sure it caters to the constantly changing customer purchase patterns. It should be your goal to not only have a high contact lens capture rate but also be the main provider for eye-glasses. In order to come out on top, you need to be number one in all categories of eye wear.

Podcast

Open your Eyes Podcast: Dr Richard Hults.

Dr. Richard Hults has been practicing optometry for over 30 years and resides in the Cleveland area.
Topics covered include: The history of contact lenses, refraction, astigmatisms, bifocal and multifocal contact lenses, side effects of contact lenses, how to clean contact lenses, and more!