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Eye care providers express concern over Q3 revenue, staffing, and inflation


The Vision Council’s Q3 Provider Insights study shows the sentiments of eye care providers nationwide as they manage practices and patient care.

optician examines frames in financial report for Q3 earnings which sparked concern among eye care professionals - Nicholas F/peopleimages.com

Image credit: Adobe Stock/Nicholas F/peopleimages.com

The Vision Council has released the results of their Provider InSights research study for Q3 2023. This study explores the sentiments of eye care providers in relation to the daily operations of their practices, the eye care industry, and the American economy and was conducted in October and November of 2023. Those surveyed include opticians, optometrists, ophthalmologists, eye care practice managers, eye care practice owners and other professionals.1

The findings of the Q3 edition of the study show that eye care providers in all the groups listed above feel that the outlook on the US economy has worsened since Q2 of 2023 and they are less confident about meeting their revenue goals for the year.1

Most respondents reported inflation had the most effect on eyewear prices and practice supplies prices, wiht a strong reported increase in patient sensitivity to exam procedures in Q3

Image credit: The Vision Council

In the press release,1 Alysse Henkel, Senior Director of Market Research and Analytics at The Vision Council, noted that the impacts being felt by providers are also being felt by patients, saying, “Our latest findings from Q3 demonstrate that economic challenges continue to be a top concern for eye care providers across the country, with responses showing that inflation is having the greatest effect on wholesale prices of eyewear and practice supplies. These impacts are reaching consumers—providers reported that patients continue to be price-sensitive when choosing eyewear and are becoming more price-sensitive about exams as well.”

Providers' outlook for the US economy has worsened in Q3 2023, with more than half expecting the economy to perform slightly worse in Q4

Image credit: The Vision Council

The report also notes a few key points that are affecting providers as they manage their businesses:

  • Compared to Q1 and Q2, eye care providers are less confident that they can meet their revenue goals.
  • Hiring remains the biggest challenge for eye care providers in Q3.
  • Most providers expect staffing levels at their practices to remain the same in 2023.
  • Inflation challenges seen in Q1 and Q2 did not change significantly in Q3. Most eye care providers said they increased prices for eyewear due to corresponding wholesale price increases.
  • Optometrists who treat childhood myopia report that parental and/or patient compliance with treatment and cost of treatment are the two biggest challenges in treating myopia successfully.1

In summary, this study sees that eye care providers reported a less successful Q3 compared to Q1 and Q2, yet they maintain a positive outlook for the rest of 2023.

About the InSights Research Program
The Vision Council’s InSights Research Program launched in May 2022 and is built on a foundation of rigorous methodology and cutting-edge technology. The InSights Research Program provides a comprehensive perspective on the state of the optical industry through quarterly consumer survey reports; quarterly in-depth special reports on eyewear and eye care products and topics; and an end-of-year market estimate and industry forecast.

1. Inflation and staffing remain top concerns of eyecare providers according to the vision council’s Q3 provider insights research report. The Vision Council. November 28, 2023. Accessed November 28, 2023.
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