Insights From Our Editors

Are Your Patients Satisfied With Their Contact Lens Brand?

Many of your patients could benefit from a conversation with you about other contact lens brand options, findings from Jobson Research’s 2014 Contact Lens Insight Survey suggest. Some 63.7 percent of respondents said they are “very satisfied” with the brand of contact lenses they currently wear, while 27.7 percent said they are just “somewhat satisfied.” Some 4.8 percent said they are “neither satisfied or unsatisfied,” while 2.3 percent said they are “somewhat unsatisfied,” and 1.3 percent said they are “very unsatisfied” with their current brand.

Click HERE to purchase Jobson Optical Research’s 2014 Contact Lens Insight Survey.

There are currently between 35-40 million full and part-time contact lens wearers in the US. About 16 percent of contact lens patients drop out every year. That equates to over 6 million people dropping out of contact lens wear per year. If you are seeing an average of 600 contact lens patients per year per doctor in your practice, then over 100 contact lens patients per doctor are dropping out of contact lenses per year. We must stop this hemorrhaging.

One way to begin to address this problem is to identify at-risk patients sooner rather than later. Let’s start with your pre-examination history questionnaire. Are you asking the best questions of your current contact lens patients to determine if they are experiencing any difficulties with their contact lens wear? In an article published in Ophthalmology Times, contact lens wearers were surveyed and gave the following results: 60 percent indicated having at least some difficulty driving at night because of vision, 61 percent said their eyes felt dry at least some of the time during the past week, and 45 percent said feelings of dry, irritated eyes limited their contact lens use.

Those results suggest three questions which need to be added to your pre-examination history questionnaire for contact lens patients.
1) Are you experiencing any difficulty driving at night because of vision?
2) Did your eyes feel dry at least some of the time during the past week?
3) Do feelings of dry, irritated eyes occasionally limit your contact lens wearing time?

If the average practice is seeing about 20 percent new contact lens fits per year, and having about 16 percent drop out, we are barely keeping our head above water. That’s a problem. Let’s put a three-step action plan in place to address this problem.

1) Identify at-risk patients (start with the pre-exam questionnaire)
2) Fix situations before they become problems (e.g.: fix tear film problems and get patients in better lenses)
3) Improve patient compliance

Make today the day to begin to fix the contact lens drop-out hemorrhaging in your practice.

i. Nichols JJ. 2010 Annual Report on Dry Eye Diseases. CL Spectrum. 2010 Jul;15(8):22.

ii. http://ophthalmologytimes.modernmedicine.com/ophthalmologytimes/news/modernmedicine/modern-medicine-feature-articles/large-survey-study-character?page=full

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