|■ As part of January's National Glaucoma Awareness Month, Prevent Blindness America (PBA) joins other organizations in encouraging everyone to educate themselves on the disease and make a New Year's resolution to make eye health a priority. Glaucoma costs the U.S. economy $2.86 billion every year in direct medical costs for outpatient, inpatient and prescription drug services, according to PBA research.|
■ Johnson & Johnson has appointed Ashley McEvoy to group chairman of Johnson & Johnson Vision Care. Ms. McEvoy succeeds Michael Sneed, who has been appointed vice president, global corporate affairs for Johnson & Johnson.
■ The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services published a revised reimbursement rate for the TearLab Osmolarity Test. The payment code of 83861 that currently applies to the test will be crosswalked or paired with code 84081. At 2011 reimbursement rates, code 83861 would be reimbursed at $23.25 per eye.
■ Konan Medical USA reported that its Quality Management System has been certified to the requirements of both ISO 13485:2003 and the Canadian Medical Device Conformity Assessment System (CMDCAS). ISO 13485 specifies requirements for a quality management system governing design, manufacture and support of medical devices.
■ VSP launched a healthcare reform section on the VSP Proof site www.vspprovesit.com/healthcare), which includes a video from VSP Board Chair Tim Jankowski, O.D., sharing his concerns about the structure of the Health Exchanges and the limitations of the Harkin Amendment. VSP will add more content here as it becomes available.
■ Practice Director Software, a wholly owned subsidiary of Williams Group, announced enhancements to its Office of the National Coordinator-Authorized Testing and Certification Body certified EHR software. In addition the EHR and Practice Management software vendor will be utilizing Amazon Web Services.
■ William Seiple, Ph.D., V.P. of Research and Director of the Arlene R. Gordon Research Institute at Lighthouse International, has agreed to be a Scientific Advisor to SRD Vision, which is developing the Salzburg Reading Desk into a commercial product.
■ Transitions Optical encourages ECPs to link their websites, social media pages, etc. to the Healthy Sight Calculator, www.HealthySightCalculator.org, which shows individuals their likely risk for vision problems, eye diseases and eye-related chronic conditions.
■ The American Optometric Foundation and Essilor of America announced the recipients of the 10th annual Essilor Technology Grants: State University of New York College of Optometry, New York, N.Y., University of California Berkeley School of Optometry, Berkeley, Cal. and The Ohio State University College of Optometry, Columbus, Ohio.
■ Carl Zeiss Vision and First Insight, developer of MaximEyes 11.0 practice management and Maxim-Eyes SQL certified electronic health records software, announced that the Carl Zeiss Vision i.Profiler plus and i.Scription will directly integrate with MaximEyes 11.0.
■ Real Kids Shades has agreed to donate $1 for every donation collected through its online store (www.realkidsshades.com) to Prevent Blindness America. The site provides an opportunity to be a “Hero” with a $1 donation, an “Action Hero” by donating $5, or a “Super Hero” with a $10 donation.
■ Now nearing its fourth anniversary, The Essilor Vision Foundation announced it has screened more than 70,000 children and provided more than 15,000 pairs of glasses. The foundation, whose goal is to provide “better sight for a better life,” has concentrated its efforts on U.S. elementary school children, establishing more than 100 Adopt-A-School programs.