News

O.D. Notebook: Coronavirus Tips/Resources Updated

Practice Tip: In the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, visit https://www.optometricmanagement.com/issues/2020/march-2020/leading-off-coronavirus-prevention-tips-for-optome for updates on how to protect your patients and yourself, including a resources section.
 
Associations
  • The American Optometric Association’s (AOA) Health Policy Institute is monitoring developments of COVID-19 in the United States, as well as response from the White House, CDC and NIH. Institute members will continue to relay and translate information into a patient care guide for optometrists. A statement can be found at https://www.aoa.org/documents/HPI/HPI%20CoronaVirus%20Statement%201-30-20.pdf.
Companies
  • ABB Optical has launched a free patient outreach program, aimed at keeping eye care providers connected with their patients via a downloadable toolkit that contains social media posts, template email communications and office signage for patients. In other news: ABB will be hosting a Virtual Trade Show from March 23 to March 27, 2020 in lieu of Vision Expo East’s postponement (combining with Vision Expo West). The online event will feature free webinars on products, services and business solutions for eye care professionals. See https://abboptical.com/virtualtradeshow
  • Alcon has launched SYSTANE MyEyes, a free patient support and retention program for patients who undergo treatment with the iLUX MGD Thermal Pulsation System, the company announced at SECO 20/20 in Atlanta. Patients who enroll in the program receive an iLUX patient care kit, communication regarding post-treatment expectations, tips for maintenance, SYSTANE product coupons and email reminders regarding follow-up and additional treatment. For additional resources on iLUX, see GetToRootCause.com; and SystaneiLUX.com. During SECO 20/20, Alcon also announced its eye allergy itch relief drops PATADAY Once Daily Relief and PATADAY Twice Daily Relief are available in U.S. retail stores and online without a prescription. In addition, the company announced that Precision1 daily disposable contact lenses are now available to eye care professionals nationwide. (Also, see the Products section below for news on the new SYSTANE HYDRATION PF.
  • Bausch + Lomb launched the Get Your Fit Together music video, which walks viewers through four “simple” steps to fitting presbyopic astigmatic patients and includes a fitting guide. The entire project, down to the lyrics and choreography, was developed and approved by eye care professionals. See the video here: https://youtu.be/7aHVIzcHedo.
  • CooperVision certified the first 20 U.S. eye care professionals in its Brilliant Futures Myopia Management Program. Certification was achieved through an in-person educational workshop covering child-parent interaction, clinical and technological topics, followed by an online exam. For additional information, visit coopervision.com/practitioner/myopia-management. In other news, CooperVision announced the nationwide availability of the Biofinity toric multifocal contact lens, which will be available in May 2020. Additionally,the company is now accepting submissions for its 2020 Science and Technology Awards, which will focus on novel research addressing myopia and presbyopia. See https://coopervision.com/our-company/science-and-technology-awards.
  • Harrow Health appointed Teresa Sparks to its Board of Directors. Ms. Sparks is the CFO and executive vice president of Envision Healthcare. She has experience in private equity and public corporate leadership.
  • Johnson & Johnson Vision introduced Prioritize Your Eyes, a worldwide effort to raise awareness regarding the connection between eye health to overall health to prompt eye exam appointments. Specifically, the initiative is part of the company’s ongoing commitment and collaboration with various partners and professional organizations to elevate eye health and make 2020 the year of greater eye health awareness. Examples of Johnson & Johnson’s commitment can be found in its “Our Global Vision for Good: 2019 Community Impact Report,” at https://www.jjvision.com/feature-story/community-impact-report. To see how patients, eye care professionals, employees and partners worldwide are committing to prioritize their eyes in 2020, follow @JNJVision on Twitter and Johnson & Johnson Vision on LinkedIn.
  • MyopiaCare announced updates to the MyAppia calculator. The updates incorporate real patient data into the platform, as well as MyoCalc, an “axial eye length graphic growth curve to illustrate the impact of myopia.” Users can access these updates at https://www.myopiacare.com/get-myappia/.
Nonprofits
  • Essilor Vision Foundation has relaunched its See Kids Soarprogram in 2020 to inspire parents, patients, optometrists and their staffs to raise awareness about those who go without proper vision care. Optometrists who enroll in the program will receive a free marketing kit and a credit card processing machine courtesy of Fire Fox Systems to help simplify and process donations. To enroll, visit www.evfusa.org/get-involved/see-kids-soar-enrollment/.
  • The GP Lens Institute (GPLI) was granted 501(c)(3) status by the IRA, determining it as a tax-exempt charitable organization. In other news, the GPLI is expanding its Board of Directors, unanimously naming Robert L. Davis, O.D., F.A.A.O., and Sara Yost, BS, M.B.A. to the Board. Dr. Davis is the co-founder of EyeVis Eye and Vision Research Institute. Ms. Yost is the current CEO of BostonSight.
Products
  • Alcon has launched SYSTANE HYDRATION PF, a preservative-free option for dry eye disease patients who have aqueous-deficient dry eye disease, sensitive eyes and are using lubricating drops more than four to six times a day. It is available in select retail stores and online.
  • Compulink Healthcare Solutions, creator of Advantage SMART Practice EHR and practice management system, announced new efficiency-related features of its Advantage 12.2 release at SECO 20/20. Enhancements include the Advantage SMART Orders feature, which allows providers to document diagnosis, assessment, order details and plan with a single click and from a single screen. 
  • Mesa GrandeVisionary’s Ortho-K reverse geometry specialty contact lenses are approved for overnight orthokeratology under the Bausch + Lomb FDA pre-market approval. 
  • Reichert Technologies signed a partnership with CATS Tonometer, LLC, to distribute the CATS Reusable Tonometer Prism within the United States. The CATS Tonometer Prism is designed with a dual-curved surface to cup the cornea and nullify IOP measurement error, as well as a rolled outer edge to minimizes tear film adhesion.
  • Thelma Optical, a Miami-based eyewear manufacturer, is launching the GLAMOUR collection celebrating women’s empowerment. The collection features six styles: (1) BellaDonna, (2) Duenna, (3) Goddess, (4) Crown, (5) Royal and (6) First Lady – combining classic styles with bold modern touches. For more information, visit www.thelma-optical.com.
ResearchNotes
  • The Center for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) released a study highlighting proper handwashing technique in safe contact lens use. The peer-reviewed study, published in Contact Lens and Anterior Eye, shows how proper handwashing habits affect the development of microbial keratitis and corneal inflammatory events. Also, CORE notes the effectiveness of handwashing with soap and water, drying hands with paper towels and the use of daily wear contact lenses as key to preventing disease spread, including the current spread of novel coronavirus, COVID-19. See the full paper here: https://www.contactlensjournal.com/article/S1367-0484(18)30863-4/fulltex .
Schools
  • The New England College of Optometry (NECO) and industry leaders signed an Industry Collaboration Proclamation at SECO 20/20 focused on practice empowerment and acceleration, public perception and expectations of optometry and the impact of technology and optometry and vice versa. The Proclamation resulted from discussions held during a NECO Industry Collaborative gathering in November 2019.  
O.D. Notebook is published weekly on Wednesdays. Unless otherwise noted, the information presented is based on press releases. Find earlier editions here. To submit a press release to be considered for publication, click here.