Ciba Vision has been asking a simple question. “Do you make contact lenses available to patients here and now?”
It’s a question every optometry practice should ask to improve patient loyalty and it’s the question that Ciba Vision will be asking 250 Australian and New Zealand practices in a large-scale evaluation of toric and multifocal soft contact lenses. It’s a question the company has been asking since July and will continue to enquire about until the end of October.
The Ciba Vision ‘Here and Now Evaluation’ aims to identify the most practical way to dispense toric and multifocal contact lenses to astigmatic and presbyopic patients.
Although 45 per cent of the population is presbyopic only 16 per cent of new contact lens fits are with monovision or multifocal contact lenses and 45 per cent of a soft contact lens wearing population has at least 0.75D of astigmatism and only 23 per cent of new soft fits are with toric lenses.
“You can see what is possible for toric lenses from North America and other developed contact lens markets. The US prescribing rate is 50 per cent more than the Australian rate. You can understand practitioners opting for spheres in the past, but with today’s toric designs, it no longer makes sense to leave patients under-corrected,” says Mark Halling, Ciba Vision Marketing Head.
Helen Gleave, Ciba Vision Professional Affairs Manager, practiced for 16 years in the UK and thinks the opportunity is even bigger for multifocal contact lenses.
“Today’s 40-year olds are more active than any generation before, but their eyes still age at the same rate. Hitting presbyopia can be the first time patients have to accept that they are not as young as they used to be. The idea of an ‘invisible’ correction, in the form of a multifocal contact lens, is very attractive,” she says.
Ciba Vision says that ‘The Here and Now Evaluation’ will help uncover how to make these lens types more available and more profitable in your practice; what is the best way to present toric and multifocal contact lenses to patients; what is the most efficient way to conduct a toric or multifocal fitting and how can we maximise the satisfaction of astigmatic and presbyopic patients?