Practice Management

Americans Not Getting Eye Care Because of Costs

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Many Americans delay visiting eye doctors because of perceived costs, according to results released from the Vision Wellness Study.

The survery, conducted by Versant Health, found that 39% of Americans say they do not visit the eye doctor as often as they’d like because of costs. Only 13% of respondents said they go to their eye doctor for routine eye care and addressing symptoms of chronic conditions. Furthermore, the study found a potential need to increase understanding about the connection between eye care and overall health. Approximately, 84% of respondents said that if they knew about the connection between eye care and early disease detection, they’d be more likely to get an eye exam.

“The fact is that vision care is preventative care, but our study found that two-thirds of people don’t realize that their eye doctors can detect chronic conditions,” said Kirk Rothrock, Chief Executive Officer at Versant Health in the a press release. “It’s critical for people to understand how eye exams allow for early detection and treatment of potentially serious—and costly—health issues.”

Other findings from the survey include:

  • Less than 40% of people have a high-level of confidence in eye doctors’ abilities to identify health conditions such as diabetes, early stage hypertension, Graves’ disease, high cholesterol and other chronic illnesses.
  • Many people (32%) report having no vision care insurance at all to cover the costs of eye care.
  • Just half (54%) of people with children under 18 years old in their household say those children have seen an eye doctor in the past two years, compared to 85% of people over 60.
  • Women are more likely (31%) than men (22%) to experience cost and insurance barriers to eye care.

To read the full press release, click here.

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