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Thread: Is it okay for optometrist to refuse PD

  1. #1
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    Is it okay for optometrist to refuse PD

    Hi,

    Just wondering if it is okay for an optometrist to refuse to give a PD if he knows that the patient is going to buy their glasses online as long as he informs the patient prior to the exam. This optometrist works side by side with an optician that has a policy of not providing pds. This is in a state that does not require pds on prescriptions.

    Jen

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    If your state does not require the PD as part of the script, you can refuse anything but the RX. Telling them upfront is a nice jesture, but in my opinion not required.

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    ATO Member OptiBoard Bronze Supporter HarryChiling's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by http://www.bls.gov/soc/soc_j2i1.htm
    Design, measure, fit, and adapt lenses and frames for client according to written optical prescription or specification. Assist client with selecting frames. Measure customer for size of eyeglasses and coordinate frames with facial and eye measurements and optical prescription. Prepare work order for optical laboratory containing instructions for grinding and mounting lenses in frames. Verify exactness of finished lens spectacles. Adjust frame and lens position to fit client. May shape or reshape frames. Include contact lens opticians.
    According to the Department of Labor, opticians measure people for eyewear. If the online vendor wants to play optician they should figureout how to measure through a computer.

  5. #5
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    To extend that question further, if the OD doesn't even do the refraction, is the OD compelled to provide a PD?

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    Do it. Charge $50.00. Have patient sign a form stating that you assume no liability for the supplier's competence in manufacturing the glasses.
    Same as supplying CL Rx which provides specifications. Ain't your fault if the lenses are not correctly made or if substitutions are done.

    Chip

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    Quote Originally Posted by obxeyeguy View Post
    Check this out, should help.
    I was pretty sure I had asked the same question. Our policy is GTFO or something like that. Now that we're moving to CyberEyes, I won't have a pupillometer in plain sight anyway.

  8. #8
    ATO Member OptiBoard Bronze Supporter HarryChiling's Avatar
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    Chip,

    If you charge for it you are liable for it. You can't provide a service and say your not liable for it, unfortunately.
    Quote Originally Posted by http://www.ftc.gov/os/2004/01/040130ophthalmicpracticesfrn.pdf

    C. Other Issues Related to Ophthalmic
    Practice Rules
    1. Waivers and Disclaimers (16 CFR
    456.2(d))
    The request for public comment on
    the Ophthalmic Practice Rules also
    asked whether any changes should be
    made to the prohibition in Section
    456.2(d) against the use of certain
    waivers or disclaimers of liability by eye
    care practitioners, or to the
    Commission
    s interpretation of that
    provision.
    42

    Section 456.2(d) prohibits eye care
    practitioners from placing on an
    eyeglass prescription, requiring a
    patient to sign, or delivering to a
    patient, any waiver or disclaimer of
    liability for the accuracy of the eye
    examination or the accuracy of the
    ophthalmic goods and services
    dispensed by another seller. Section
    456.2(d) was originally promulgated
    because disclaimers
    ‘‘may have the
    effect of making consumers erroneously
    believe that other dispensers are not
    qualified to dispense their eyeglasses
    and discouraging consumers from
    shopping around.
    ’’ 43

    Section 456.4 states that eye care
    practitioners are not liable under the
    Rules for the ophthalmic goods and
    services that another seller has
    dispensed. The FTC has interpreted
    Section 456.2(d) consistent with Section
    456.4 to allow eye care practitioners to
    make truthful and non-misleading
    statements on prescriptions that sellers
    of ophthalmic goods and services are
    I do like your idea though, with a bit of modification:

    PD measurements = $50.00
    Troubleshoot and Diagnose = $75.00

    Of course if the measurements are wrong the manufacturer should remake the glasses N/C just like we would for a doctors remake, it's just professional courtesy. And you figure that's $125.00 off of every internet sale if the screw up and if they don't that's still $50.00, not a bad take.
    Last edited by HarryChiling; 03-11-2008 at 07:28 PM.

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    Just An Optician jediron1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by npdr View Post
    To extend that question further, if the OD doesn't even do the refraction, is the OD compelled to provide a PD?


    I would tell the patient that giving a pd is part of your exam fee and charge accordingly. If your exam fee is 60.00 I would charge 25.00 for pd and offer to check glasses when he or she receives them to see if they meet specs.

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    Master OptiBoarder rbaker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jentile4 View Post
    Hi,

    Just wondering if it is okay for an optometrist to refuse to give a PD if he knows that the patient is going to buy their glasses online as long as he informs the patient prior to the exam. This optometrist works side by side with an optician that has a policy of not providing pds. This is in a state that does not require pds on prescriptions.

    Jen
    What's the big issue here?

    It takes ten seconds with a dollars worth of kit and any fourth grader can easily perform the task. It is a simple metric completely devoid of the thought process.

    Oh . . . are you concerned that the customer might be going to order glasses on line? Oh no, the dreaded troll opticians have set up shop in cyberspace. We are all doomed.

    Well, haven't we all been doing this service; providing Rx's and anatomical measurements for years to the dreaded gnomes of safety eyewear. How many of us have lost any significant business to this sector of the market place.

    Give the poor gomer his PD and when he returns a few weeks later with his ten dollar glasses enjoy a good laugh. But remember this:

    You best customer is the one who went elsewhere and returned!

  11. #11
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Gold Supporter DragonLensmanWV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rbaker View Post
    What's the big issue here?

    It takes ten seconds with a dollars worth of kit and any fourth grader can easily perform the task. It is a simple metric completely devoid of the thought process.

    Oh . . . are you concerned that the customer might be going to order glasses on line? Oh no, the dreaded troll opticians have set up shop in cyberspace. We are all doomed.

    Well, haven't we all been doing this service; providing Rx's and anatomical measurements for years to the dreaded gnomes of safety eyewear. How many of us have lost any significant business to this sector of the market place.

    Give the poor gomer his PD and when he returns a few weeks later with his ten dollar glasses enjoy a good laugh. But remember this:

    You best customer is the one who went elsewhere and returned!
    That is true. We have had many people leave us to go to Wally World, only to come back two years later. Then you have problems with any options because their options at WM panned out so poorly they want only the most basics. And you now have to put lenses in the Wally World frame.

    It could also be argued that
    Your worst customer is one where "only" price is paramount.

    Problem is when they return they want you to fix their $1.50 frames that seemed so perfect in their browser.

    Of course you could always ask them if the online store measured their head with a big caliper to see what size frame you need.:D:D
    DragonlensmanWV N.A.O.L.
    "There is nothing patriotic about hating your government or pretending you can hate your government but love your country."

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    Lie Bility

    U B liable for the accuracy of the P.D. U took. U not be liable for the accuracy of the spectacles including the P.D. of same.
    U not be liable for anything in dem glasses just that your P.D. was taken properly.


    Chip

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    Just An Optician jediron1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chip anderson View Post
    U B liable for the accuracy of the P.D. U took. U not be liable for the accuracy of the spectacles including the P.D. of same.
    U not be liable for anything in dem glasses just that your P.D. was taken properly.


    Chip

    Chip i love yor phra-sing :cheers:

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    Quote Originally Posted by jediron1 View Post
    Chip i love yor phra-sing :cheers:
    I've dubbed it "chip-bonics" :bbg:

  15. #15
    OptiBoard Professional Jamelina's Avatar
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    Big Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by rbaker View Post
    What's the big issue here?

    It takes ten seconds with a dollars worth of kit and any fourth grader can easily perform the task. It is a simple metric completely devoid of the thought process.

    Oh . . . are you concerned that the customer might be going to order glasses on line? Oh no, the dreaded troll opticians have set up shop in cyberspace. We are all doomed.

    Well, haven't we all been doing this service; providing Rx's and anatomical measurements for years to the dreaded gnomes of safety eyewear. How many of us have lost any significant business to this sector of the market place.

    Give the poor gomer his PD and when he returns a few weeks later with his ten dollar glasses enjoy a good laugh. But remember this:

    You best customer is the one who went elsewhere and returned!

    Agreed...most people feel private optometrists charge too much anyway. Why add a rediculous and pointless fee that will only encourage that opinion and decision to go somewhere else even after they realize ordering online glasses is a bad idea.

    Just my 2 cents

  16. #16
    Carl Zeiss Vision OptiBoard Gold Supporter Darryl Meister's Avatar
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    It takes ten seconds with a dollars worth of kit and any fourth grader can easily perform the task. It is a simple metric completely devoid of the thought process.
    In my opinion, taking a consistently accurate PD or fitting height measurement requires quite a bit of skill, and is one of the reasons that we have "opticians" (and not fourth graders looking for part-time work) in the first place.

    This optometrist works side by side with an optician that has a policy of not providing pds.
    If a state happens to require the PD measurement as part of the spectacle prescription (and I'm not aware of any that do), this may prove to be an issue. Otherwise, there is no need to measure a PD distance in the first place if the patient is not being fitted for eyeglass lenses. And this measurement still represents an additional "clinical test" that a reasonably competent staff member must perform. Consequently, the best course of action to avoid situations like this in the first place, if capture rate is your primary concern without offending patients by refusing to provide prescription data that they feel they have "paid" for, is probably not to take an actual "PD measurement" until one is needed.

    While you may need a "ball-park" estimate of the patient's PD in order to align the trial-frame or refractor-head lenses or for some other diagnostic test, you certainly don't need to take an actual or exact PD measurement, prior to fitting the patient for spectacle lenses. Unfortunately, since ophthalmic dispensers do not typically charge for their actual services, eyeglass consumers fail to realize that the cost of the skilled labor required to take these measurements -- and to fit the eyewear, for that matter -- is included in the initial "overhead" and profit margin calculation of the cost of the eyeglasses. Of course, this is also why an online retailer -- free from the burden of the cost of such skilled labor -- can sell eyeglasses at a lower cost.
    Darryl J. Meister, ABOM

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