16 CFR Part 456 ; Agency Information Collection Activities: Review; Comment Request Ophthalmic Practice Rule (Eyeglass Rule): FTC Project No. R511996
I am a practicing Optometrist and I have run across a number of problems that can affect the safety of my patients eyes due to noncompliance with the stated rule and it's intent. I have had a number patients with corneal ulcers due to wearing contact lenses for too long. All of these patients had decided to get their lenses online where they would have no accountability to a doctor. They think their friends know more than a Dr. and wearing the same lense for too long is the biggest problem and the main cause for these corneal ulcers. A couple of these patients have a permanent reduction in best visual acuity. Online dispensor's take advantage of the passive verification. They will fax a verification request but the don't tell us who the seller is, or how to contact them by phone or other means other than Fax. I think this information needs to be included in the verification request. The prescriber should be given a time and a chance to meet or beat the deal the online seller is offering to the patient. So I think this would all work out in the consumer's favor because the prescriber would have a chance to remain in contact with the patient and help make sure the patient is wearing their lenses in a health manner. Rather than waiting until the damage has already occurred. I find the adds on TV to be very misleading many times. When patients did take the time to check with us for our prices they are commonly surprised to find we are cheaper that the 1-800 CL sellers and that is our usual pricing not a special pricing. So the consumer comes out better on both fronts cheaper price and maintaining a relationship with the prescriber which is best for their eye health.