Contact Lens Practice Pearls
The Daily Disposable Multifocal Lens Opportunity
BY JASON R. MILLER, OD, MBA, FAAO
As Baby Boomers age, many have a greater need for multifocal vision correction. In addition, Generation Xers have grown up with soft contact lenses, are now entering the presbyopic market, and do not want their lenses taken away. Don’t just offer these groups multifocal spectacles; instead, consider daily disposable multifocal lenses.
The daily disposable multifocal market has swelled over the past few months from one to three options in the United States. It now includes Alcon’s Dailies AquaComfort Plus Multifocal, CooperVision’s Proclear 1 Day Multifocal, and Sauflon’s Clariti 1day Multifocal.
With the enhanced convenience of no lens care and comfort resulting from a new, clean lens each day, you can decrease the number of dropouts, thereby boosting practice revenues; the loss of a single contact lens patient may cost your practice up to $24,000 over the patient’s lifetime (Rumpakis, 2010).
The Multifocal Conversation
The first step to moving patients into these contact lenses is education. While there are many educational materials about daily disposable multifocal lenses, the best marketing tool is to ask every patient: “Have you considered multifocal contact lenses to correct your visual needs?” That opens the door for discussion and converts many patients into believers. Daily disposable multifocal lenses not only provide convenience, but the optics will correct both distance and near visual needs.
Most of the time when patients are hesitant to give contact lenses a try, they are unable to tell you exactly why they are resisting. Sometimes they don’t understand how contact lenses can improve both their distance and near vision; the multifocal aspect concerns them. In addition, those who have never worn lenses before are concerned simply about wearing them. And, many are concerned about the lens application process. Focus on the health and vision benefits that these contact lenses provide, but make sure to discuss fees upfront so patients are not surprised.
Manage Patient Expectations
It is important to understand your patients’ expectations. Try to go over their visual needs and set realistic expectations upfront. For example, if a patient is emmetropic, discuss the fitting process and how it may take some fine tuning with different prescriptions before the balance between distance and near vision is as perfect as it can be. In exchange for enhanced close vision, he may not be able to see quite as far away as he does now. This may be a challenging prescription, but, in the end, the multifocal contact lens will provide a full range of vision correction.
After you have improved the lives of patients who are comfortably wearing multifocal daily disposable contact lenses (especially if they previously had to use reading glasses), these patients are usually more loyal compared to other patients. They also are great referral sources, sharing their multifocal experiences with friends and family who also may be good candidates for these lenses.
Improve the lives of patients who have multifocal prescriptions by educating them on the benefits of daily disposable multifocal lenses. Moving patients into these convenient, comfort-oriented contact lenses can improve vision and further develop this business opportunity. CLS
For references, please visit www.clspectrum.com/references and click on document #223.
Dr. Miller is in a partnership private practice in Powell, Ohio, and is an adjunct faculty member for The Ohio State University College of Optometry. He has received honoraria for writing, speaking, acting in an advisory capacity, or research from Alcon, Allergan, CooperVision, and Visioneering Technologies. You can reach him at email@example.com.