I was in the contact lens room watching a patient put in the contacts that I wanted to give him. I mentioned how the prescription would be good for 2 years per Utah law.
“Wow, is that new?” he asked.
“Umm, it’s pretty new. The state lawmakers got together and decided that’s how it should be,” I answered.
Then he said, rather sardonically, “Why, because they’re all doctors?”
I laughed out loud. It’s so true. When lawmakers decide to micromanage an entire healthcare profession by telling us how long we have to make a prescription good for, then I think they better have some proof that this new policy won’t cause more problems than it helps. Where is their research that supports such a sweeping change? And the research can’t come from 1-800 or Canada because we know they have a biases.
Now, the Utah law does say that I can make it for less than 2 years as long as I document some medical reason why it should be less. So…since nearly every contact lens patient I see was brought up on AV2 contacts (or some other low oxygen lens that is cheap), I think I could probably make a one year expiration on most everyone since most everyone in that category has mild corneal neovascularization.
So do I? No, because I switch almost everyone into a high oxygen lens, my preferred method for treating K-neo, so if they’re wearing an AV Oasys or Ciba Night and Day, what more can I do to help them?
But if they refuse to switch to a more costly (yet healthier) contact lens, then I explain how we should decrease their wearing time, maintain an approved replacement schedule, and monitor it next year.
One question for you all. Why do you insist on telling your patients that it’s okay to throw away their Acuvue2 lens once a month?!??!! IT’S A TWO WEEK LENS!! You are the reason I see so much K-neo. I hope you’re proud of yourself.