Optometric Education

The Journal of the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

Optometric Education: Volume 43 Number 1 (Fall 2017)

Industry News

Industry News

Campaign Connects Contact Lenses and “Everyday” Athletes

Based on research into the mindsets of “everyday” athletes, Alcon has launched a year-long consumer education campaign to emphasize the importance of clear vision, including the role of contact lenses, in providing a competitive edge at any level. The survey results behind the “Invisible Edge” campaign found clear eyesight tops the list of attributes that three in four “everyday” athletes ― people age 18 and older who play a team sport competitively (intramural or recreation league  or individually (e.g., golfing, cycling or running a marathon) ― say help them to perform at their best. Clear vision ranked higher than factors such as mental focus, quick reflexes, strength and speed.

The campaign features Olympic medalists Laurie Hernandez and Tobin Heath, who will share their personal and professional experiences with the benefits of contact lenses.

VP of Medical Affairs Appointed

Aerie Pharmaceuticals Inc. appointed John Maltman, PhD, as Vice President of Medical Affairs. Dr. Maltman is responsible for leading the strategic efforts of the Medical Affairs Department across a broad spectrum of product-related activities. He previously held several related positions at Allergan Inc.

Aerie Pharmaceuticals is a clinical-stage pharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of first-in-class therapies for the treatment of glaucoma and other eye diseases.

New Online Resource Features Student/Educator Section

CooperVision Inc. introduced ECP Viewpoints, a new avenue for sharing insights across the optometric profession. The online resource features original content including peer-written articles, legislative updates and news and information from CooperVision’s Professional Affairs team.

Sections include Optometry Students & Educators, Legislative Advocacy, and From the Lane, which enables practitioners to share insights and practical experiences related to building a successful contact lens practice. The company plans to update content regularly and aggregate the information into a monthly e-mail newsletter. Click here to read ECP Viewpoints.

Dry Eye Posters Selected for Meeting Presentation

Several dry eye-related Allergan-supported abstracts were selected for poster presentation during the annual meeting of the American Academy of Optometry in Chicago, Oct. 11-14, 2017. They include:

  • Effectiveness and Safety of Intranasal Tear Neurostimulation for Subjects with Dry Eye Disease
  • Effect of Intranasal Neurostimulation on Total Tear Lipid and Total Protein Concentrations in Subjects with Dry Eye
  • A Comparison of Tear Film Properties in Subjects With Evaporative and Non-Evaporative Dry Eye
  • Lipid Layer Thickness Changes with an Omega-3 Formulated Eye Drop

In April 2017, Allergan received FDA approval of its TrueTear Intranasal Tear Neurostimulator, the first and only FDA-cleared device developed to temporarily increase tear production during neurostimulation in adult patients. For more information, visit the company’s website.

Company Acquires CL subscription Service

Johnson & Johnson Vision acquired Sightbox Inc., an online, membership-based subscription service for contact lens wearers in the United States. Sightbox helps patients connect with eyecare professionals and addresses a growing consumer preference for more convenient access to eye health services and products. Its services include scheduling a comprehensive, annual eye exam and contact lens evaluation for members, as well as providing them with an annual supply of contact lenses.

J&J reported that Sightbox’s growth has been primarily fueled by private-pay patients who don’t have vision insurance, a model it says encourages people who may not otherwise do so to visit an eyecare professional. While Sightbox is now part of Johnson & Johnson Vision, it is expected to operate as a separate business and continue to provide contact lenses from all major manufacturers.

Company Designates Chief Medical Officer

Neuro-ophthalmologist Alberto González García, MD, has been named Chief Medical Officer for Diopsys Inc. Dr. González joined the company in 2010 as Research Director and Chairman of the Scientific and Medical Advisory Board. In that role, he helped lead clinical, scientific and engineering efforts to develop advanced, patient-friendly visual electrophysiology devices. He has published and contributed to numerous books and studies in many areas, including ischemic optic neuropathy, early diagnosis of glaucoma, and optic coherence tomography (OCT) in the diagnosis of retinal and optic nerve diseases. Dr. González is a patent-holder on the non-invasive Diopsys ERG Lid Sensor, and the inventor of Diopsys CORDA software, which uses existing OCT images to better discriminate different components of the retinal nerve fiber layer.

Visit Online Portal for Practice Growth Tools and More

Eyecare professionals in all facets of the field can click to Transitions PRO (Professional Resources Online ), the comprehensive resource portal provided by Transitions Optical, to access information, tools, strategies and materials designed to improve patient care and practice growth. Hundreds of resources are conveniently organized into categories that include Point of Sale, Websites & Web Tools, and Presentations and Videos. Downloadable documents include white papers, sell-sheets, dispensing tips and more.

Vision Markets Continue to Grow

The Vision Council, producer of the International Vision Expo conferences, reported recent findings from VisionWatch, its large-scale continuous research study that tracks the industry. According to the numbers, total revenue generated by the vision care industry during the year ending in the second quarter of 2017 grew to $40.16 billion, an increase of 0.2% compared to the same period in 2016. The number of adults using vision correction increased to 191.7 million, an increase of close to 2.8 million from June 2016. Also, during the 24-month period ending June 2017, the strongest optical market was contact lenses, which was up 8.5% to $4.90 billion.

Click here for more information.

Company Reaches a Milestone

National Vision announced that it recently reached a milestone ― the opening of its 1,000th retail location. The new store, in Los Angeles, is part of the company’s America’s Best Contacts & Eyeglasses brand.

The company noted that its 1,000th store opening is indicative of its overall success and its mission to help people by making quality eye care and eyewear more affordable and accessible. Additional achievements include:

  • opening more than 500 new stores in the past 10 years
  • creating more than 5,000 new jobs
  • serving millions of customers
  • through charitable partnerships, directly assisting approximately 800,000 individuals to see, and indirectly helping to improve the vision of approximately 11.5 million individuals globally

For more information, visit the company’s website.

Application for Approval of Extended Wear

Bausch + Lomb filed a premarket approval application (PMA) with the FDA seeking clearance of its Bausch + Lomb ULTRA contact lenses for extended wear. If approved, the lenses would be indicated for up to seven days of continuous wear. The filing is supported in part by a 12-month, controlled, parallel group, masked, randomized study involving 34 sites across the country, which evaluated the safety and effectiveness of the samfilcon A soft (hydrophilic) contact lens, a silicone hydrogel lens, when used for seven-day extended wear by adapted soft contact lens wearers. Visit the B+L website for more information.