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Getting what we pay for – also in Optometry?


optometrist jefferson city moWe've interviewed Christina, VisionArts Optician about patients' optical options and insurance options:

EyeCarePro: Christina, please tell us why a patient should not just purchase the level of lenses that their insurance covers?

Christina: That’s a great question that we get asked every single day.  To put it simply, most insurance plans only cover very basic products, and you won’t see your best with those products.  About 50% of your vision through glasses is based on the prescription that the doctor provides, but the other 50% is based on what we do with your lenses to ensure that they function properly for your lifestyle.

In order to see the very best, you need lenses that control light, control glare, and control distortion.  The basic lenses covered by most insurance plans won’t do any of these things.  We control light with Transitions adaptive lens technology, not only does this provide you with superior UV protection, but it amps up your blue light protection and it assist with dark-light adaptation.  We control glare with Crizal No-glare lenses.  These lenses eliminate glare and reflection on your lenses which helps the good light pass through your lenses, allowing you to see approximately 20% clearer.  We control distortion by using high definition technology.  High definition, single vision or no-line lenses will provide you more clarity in low light conditions, sharper vision across the lens, more vivid colors, and crisper details.

Think about it like you think about your television.  You can go and buy an old TV from a garage sale and when you plug it in, you’ll see a picture on the screen; but if you go out purchase a new high definition, flat screen TV, the images on the screen will be more vivid and crisp.  Your glasses are no different.  You can buy basic glasses and see ok, or, you can add features to your lenses that will allow you to see the world around you more clearly.

EyeCarePro: Do I need really need to purchase all of the newest features in order to see my best?

Christina:  In order to see your best, yes, you do.  Going back to the TV analogy; why do we want to purchase a new HD, flat screen TV instead of keeping our old? Mostly because it has newer technologies that enhance our viewing experience, making it better than ever before.  You can go with the basic lens technology and struggle to see well through your lenses, or you can upgrade to new technology and be able to see so much better.

EyeCarePro: How do I know you are not just trying to upsell me on a product I don’t really need?

Christina:  I believe it comes down to our relationship with each patient, and the trust that is built.  I will gladly sell you basic, insurance-covered lenses if that is what you wish, but it is also my responsibility to educate you on all of the products that are available to you and what will make you see the very best.  That is part of providing excellent patient care.  It is not fair for me to assume you only want what your insurance covers.  I want to provide you with knowledge of everything available to you.  After you have that information, it’s your choice to purchase what suits you and your budget.

EyeCarePro: Are the glasses my insurance covers lower quality?

Christina: No, not at all. They are basic, not low quality, at least in our practice. These lenses will provide you with the essentials required to correct your vision; your prescription in a simple, plastic lens. When you look through that lens, you will still fight through the glare and distortion, and you won’t have light control. Our basic lenses are not low-quality, they just doesn’t have the features and benefits that will provide you with the clearest vision possible.

EyeCarePro: Can you give me an example of a basic lens and what I would see, compared to what I would see through a lens with the new technology?

Christina: Sure. Anyone who has worn a basic knows that there is a lot of blur and distortion in the peripheral of the lens. When you first start wearing glasses, it usually takes some time to adapt to the limitations of the lenses.  Often times, the vision correction alone is enough of an improvement that the patient is willing to put up with the limitations that come along with basic lenses.  For those who don’t wish to have limited clarity in their vision, the newer, free-form lenses are the better option.  These lenses are fully customized for the wearer. Along with the doctor’s prescription, we take specialized measurements such as, how your eyes rotate, the distance the frame sits from your eyes, your preferred reading distance, your natural head posture, and more. Our lab uses these measurements, unique only to you, and creates a lens from scratch customized for how you use your eyes. This essentially eliminates all of the blur and distortion in the lenses, and brings you back to what your natural vision felt like before you needed glasses at all.  Add non-glare and Transitions, and you will see clearer than you have ever seen before! I guarantee it.


Come by Visionarts Eyecare Center in Fulton, MO today for a comprehensive eye exam for the whole family. Also serving Jefferson City for all your eye care needs.