Vision Expo East wraps up on a positive note


One physician author describes how he is overwhelmed by the attitude and attendance of those at VEE 2010.

Editor's note: International Vision Expo East and West are among the leading resources for continuing education, clinical equipment and supplies, and the latest merchandise for optical dispensaries. The Vision Expos are a combined "fashion event and medical meeting." The Advanstar Eye Health Group-including Ophthalmology Times and Optometry Times-is proud to support the Vision Expos' mission to enhance the eye-care profession.

I had occasion to speak with several optometrists and opticians, and although the nation's unemployment numbers still are hovering around 9.7%, attendees overwhelmingly reported growth over the same period last year.

Win-win opportunities

The staff that represents us at the show has established a relationship with most of the speakers and each year everything goes smoother and smoother.

Finally, the Vision Expo meetings have come full circle in establishing themselves as the go-to place for business and practice management issues.

Ophthalmic disease lecturers are beginning to include the subject of DDD more and more in their presentations along with discussions of specialty lenses for particular medical conditions.

Optician lecturers are drawing more and more physicians to their lectures on managing frame boards, understanding specialty lenses, and prescribing particular coatings and lens treatments.

As revenue from major medical carriers continues to decrease with overall health-care changes, practices are beginning to look to the optical dispensary for ways to increase practice revenue.

As this change continues to grow, opticians will need even more training and topics such as professional marketing and sales training will gain in popularity.

Moving forward

As the conference advisory board members continue to work together, over time the program will continue to grow and will reflect the cutting-edge science and subjects that the professionals in our industry need to continue to keep abreast of all issues facing them.

Technical improvements in ophthalmic lenses and diagnostic equipment continue to demand attendance at shows like Vision Expo East and the necessity to visit often will grow.

The challenges that we have in improving the show really are opportunities in disguise, and we are prepared to take this meeting to the next level with the help of our hard-working members.

Kirk L. Smick, OD, FAAO, is chief of optometry services at Clayton Eye Center, Morrow, GA, and an owner of the facility. Dr. Smick also serves as a technical advisor to many companies in the ophthalmic industry and has helped pioneer several visual advances, including bifocal contact lenses.

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