COMPILED HERE are selected tips from this Optometric Management’s Office Technology issue. Let us know what you think of this feature at tinyurl.com/OMComment .
• MANAGE DIGITAL EYE STRAIN IN PATIENTS
Smart phones and tablets are part of a growing category of devices causing a massive increase on the visual demands of our patients. Specifically, virtual reality and augmented reality devices have binocular headsets. Users of these devices who have visual problems will complain that they can’t see either what they want to or need to, so that they may continue competing or enjoying their experiences. Recognize the signs and symptoms to treat these patients.
(Digital eye strain, p.16)
• CREATE A HIPAA TRAINING PROGRAM
One way to ensure your practice is HIPAA compliant is by ensuring your staff meets OCR’s training requirement. This requirement: Not only must HIPAA training be completed, at minimum, once per year for all employees, but training requirements also mandate that it be concluded in a modular format. This means documented proof is required that a quiz was taken by each employee.
(HIPAA compliance, p.22)
• ELIMINATE ALTERNATIVE DIAGNOSIS
Just because it’s allergy season, that does not mean a patient who presents with complaints of “itchy” “watery” and/or “burning” eyes has allergic conjunctivitis. Do your due diligence to make sure it’s not dry eye disease (DED), as the signs and symptoms of allergic conjunctivitis and dry eye disease are similar and, thus, muddy the diagnostic waters. (Cornea, p.32)
• CRUNCH THE NUMBERS
Diagnostic modalities require a significant investment. They should not be purchased without due diligence. For example, a break-even analysis assists you in determining how many times you need to use the equipment to break-even.
(Interdisciplinary Care, p.36)
• MARKET YOUR NEW OPTICAL
Whether you provide an on-site lab that provides quick turnaround times or a “try-before-you-buy” strategy, get the word out through a marketing plan that highlights your new optical’s offerings.
(CEO Checklist, p.41)
• COMMUNICATE VALUE
If you find your patients are walking with their glasses prescriptions, don’t immediately lower your prices and seek budget frames. Instead, try having your opticians communicate the value of the frames you offer. (Frame and lens reps can be a great resource here.) When one effectively communicates value, “that’s too expensive” is no longer uttered.
• STRATEGICALLY SCHEDULE APPOINTMENTS
Try to schedule appointments that involve more time with the tech during the doctor’s lunch break, such as contact lens instruction, VF and OCT. For example, if the doctor’s lunch break is from noon to 1 p.m., schedule an appointment at 12:30 p.m., and when the doctor returns, he or she can review the results. New appointments may start at 12:45, so pre-testing is done upon the doctor’s return.
(Corporate O.D., p.46)
• INCREASE CAPTURE RATE
Put in place an online scheduling tool so that patients can make appointments with you outside of business hours. Additionally, it will make your office more attractive.
(Social media, 48)
• IDENTIFY PROFITABILITY
Operating expenses are those associated with the main activity of the business. As such, these expenses, such as brand marketing, may not be specifically attributable to any one revenue source, however, the value could be — and should be — divided equally among the revenue sources.
(Ask Jay, p.50) OM