Step 3: Optical
The final step takes place in the optical. Technicians and eyecare practitioners are able to pave the way by providing the optician with list of needs for the patient. For example, the tech may communicate that the patient is an avid fisherman who would benefit from polarized lenses. Another patient may have ripening cataracts not yet ready for surgery, and premium anti-reflective lenses would help.
Eyecare providers and technicians who share this information in front of the patient during the patient handoff help clarify solutions to the patient. This, in turn, helps justify the optical staff recommendation of multiple pairs to address patient needs.
The reward of making a difference in our patients’ lives through improved vision motivates us to do more to meet all of their visual needs. This means more pairs for optimal visual performance. Multiple solutions involve multiple pairs.
Eyewear dispensing is a balance between identifying needs while offering solutions. In addition, let’s not forget the fashion aspect of eyewear. Some patients are more interested in the latest fashion or technology; they may see eyewear more as a “want” than a “need.”
Related: Modernized lifestyle dispensing
Understanding patient needs
The most crucial aspect of scripting for seconds involves using your ears more than your mouth. By listening, we can better understand the direction needed in dispensing solution eyewear. Hearing their priorities can validate you in your patients’ eyes.
Communicating involves the patient sharing her needs and you translating those needs into beneficial eyewear solutions. If you are too focused on delivering your product spiel and treat every patient identically, you will miss opportunities to present individualized solutions that can be met only with additional pairs of eyewear.
In the optical, I begin my conversation by recapping what the eyecare practitioner shared in the patient handoff. I then ask the patient about other needs or concerns he has. Asking questions followed by patiently listening allows me time to digest what is revealed in the form of needs. From the conversation, I can see the potential solutions and get a feel for which direction to proceed.
During this time, my focus is on the patient in front of me. She needs my undivided attention in order to fully receive the required solutions. I am genuinely interested in what she to say. I am listening to better understand her needs, not simply listening in order to “cookie cutter” back my response.