FTC 16 CFR Part 315 Public Workshop Examining Contact Lens Marketplace And Analyzing Proposed Changes To The Contact Lens Rule
Outside contact retailers have no right to change a doctor's Rx. A doctor prescribes those specific contacts because they have assessed the fit of them on the actual patient as well as made sure that the material will not affect their health. Why should someone with no health/ anatomy/ physiology background be allowed to change material for a patient? They have no idea if that material and brand was specifically chosen for a reason. Some patients are sensitive to certain materials. Some patients require specific base curves. None of this information is considered when a company, like 1-800-contacts, decides to switch to something else. Another issue is that online retail stores will contact doctor offices with a fax or phone call. We then have 8 hours to respond to that fax and verify the patient's information. They will send this fax or phone call while the practice is closed. If no response they are automatically allowed to fill the prescription. I have personally confirmed many Rx's through phone call and fax for 1-800-contacts. The patient will request a full years worth, yet the Rx is either about to expire or they have already purchased some contacts for that year. I will change that on the form and send it back to the retail company at a reasonable response time, but then the patient will still get a years supply! Then they will stretch this even longer. So that doesn't allow doctors to check their ocular surface to make sure they are not abusing their contacts. Then if they are abusing their contact, we need to interfere and figure out a game plan for them, for example switching contact brands and materials. Contacts are a medical device and they needed to be treated that way by everyone else.