Online Resources from the GPLI
BY EDWARD S. BENNETT, OD, MSED
The emergence of the Internet as an important modality for the contact lens education of practitioners is evident. The GP Lens Institute, the educational division of the Contact Lens Manufacturers Association, has developed a number of online resources, often in cooperation with Wink Productions, for educating contact lens practitioners. The Web site, www.gpli.info, has a number of resources including the following:
GP Lens Case Grand Rounds Troubleshooting Guide This reference guide authored by GPLI Advisory Committee members has 52 separate and distinct cases that pertain to any one of six categories including spherical, toric, presbyopic, keratoconus, post-surgical and corneal reshaping lens fitting. This is a living book that will be updated with new cases on a regular basis.
Each case presents the successful management plan as well as possible alternative plans.
Interactive Click and Fit Online GP Lens Training This interactive Web-based training program is intended to simulate GP lens fitting and should be available in November. It will include narrated PowerPoint presentations accompanied by interactive simulated fitting and problem-solving in the following areas: spherical lenses, multifocal and bifocal lenses and toric lens design and fitting. A fourth module on irregular cornea is being considered for 2008.
GP Lens Care and Handling This training module includes a video program consisting of an application and removal section and a care and compliance section. It's accompanied by an application and removal brochure.
GP Lens Management Guide The downloadable guide presents useful pearls on the design, fitting and problem-solving of spherical, presbyopic, high astigmatic and keratoconic patients. A downloadable fluorescein pattern identification guide is also available.
Database of GP Lens Designs, Materials, Laboratories and Solutions A searchable database — by laboratory, lens design, material and solution is available, representing the Contact Lenses & Solutions Summary of GP lenses.
Toric Lens Design Programs In addition to the forthcoming module on toric GP lenses for "Click and Fit," a Mandell-Moore Bitoric Lens Automated Calculator and Guide is on the site. In addition, Thomas Quinn, OD, MS, offers an excellent program utilizing a model of the eye with corresponding optical crosses that allows practitioners to input the refractive information and dynamically observe the toric lens design being developed. This will be available in late 2007.
Online Symposia Every other month the GPLI hosts an online symposium. They feature a theme (GP bifocals, torics, keratoconus, etc.) and well known experts who will answer questions on the topic. Several cases will be posted on the Web site for discussion during each session.
Symposia for the latter part of 2007 include Post-Surgical Correction with GP Lenses and GP Correction of Presbyopia.
Ask the Experts You have an opportunity to e-mail the GPLI with a request for assistance on a challenging case. This question will then be sent to some of the experts on the advisory committee for their assistance.
Presbyopic Fitting Aides These include downloadable brochures and cards for both patient and practitioner education as well as the opportunity to order the "Rx for Success: Building Your Practice with GP Bifocals and Multifocals" comprehensive practitioner, staff and patient educational program on CD-ROM.
GP Lenses in Contact Lens Practice An online video presentation, available in September, provides a 10-minute presentation on GP lens applications, obtaining confidence in the presentation and evaluation of GP lenses, and available resources for gaining this confidence.
In summary, GP lens fitting doesn't have to be complicated. These useful resources assist in the successful fitting of all types of GP lens designs. CLS
Dr. Bennett is an associate professor of optometry at the University of Missouri-St. Louis and is executive director of the GP Lens Institute.