Oct. 7, 2015
Justin Bazan, OD; Cheryl G. Murphy, OD; and Kristin Protosow, OD, FAAO, say educating patients about the dangers of ultra-violet radiation from the moment they enter the office, through pre-testing, the exam room and the optical, delivers a strong eye health message. Good communication also ensures that patients will leave with the optical products they need to fulfill your treatment plan. The is the first in a series of ROB Roundtable discussions with progressive eyecare practitioners.
Use a UV Spectrometer. During pre-testing, Dr. Bazan says his office asks about all of the patient’s eyewear and sunwear, testing the glasses and sunglasses with a UV spectrometer, which gauges the level of UV protection the lenses provide. Dr. Bazan says he and his staff explain to patients that all glasses, those with clear lenses, as well as tinted sunglasses, should offer adequate protection from UV light.
Be a good model for patients. Dr. Bazan wears sunglasses hooked to his lapel in place of a tie, which opens a conversation about the importance of patients carrying their sunglasses with them every time they leave the house during the daytime.
Discuss the link between eye health and UV protection. Dr. Protosow says she always sets time aside in the exam room to discuss the patient’s medical history, and any signs of early eye disease, and then links that discussion to the importance of the patient protecting their eyes from the effects of the sun. She says that making the connection between eye health and the need to protect the eyes from UV light is a key to making an impact on patients.
Educate parents about the need to protect children’s eyes. Dr. Murphy notes the importance of not only getting adults to wear glasses and sunwear with UV protection, but to explain to them the importance of protecting their children’s eyes, as well. She says that ODs should impart a strong message to patients: Make wearing sunwear to protect your eyes as second nature as applying sunblock to protect your skin.
Justin Bazan, OD, is the owner of Park Slope Eye in Brooklyn, N.Y. To contact him: email@example.com.
Cheryl G. Murphy, OD, practices in Holbrook and Babylon, N.Y. To contact her: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kristin Protosow, OD, FAAO, practices at Eye Vision Associates in Lake Ronkonkoma, N.Y. To contact her: Dr.Protosow@gmail.com