The webinar “Optical parameters and Remote eye exams” hosted by OPT Education Trust was a very informative one. It was held on 8th May, 2020 lasting a good 100 minutes of innovative information, demonstration and Q&A.
In the current unprecedented times been faced by all industries, the need for innovation is felt now than ever before. This webinar primarily revolved around optical parameters in the post-COVID-19 lockdown scenario. Innovative methods to conduct eye examination without the physical presence of a person in showrooms or with the clinics going to them were also discussed.
The optical industry has a genuine concern for the safety of opticians, optometrists and their customers. How best can safety measures be implemented without compromising on customers service were some of the key points discussed during the webinar.
The welcome note, introduction and discussion were moderated by Prof. Monica Chaudhry and Rajesh Wadhwa.
The key speaker for this webinar was Ajeet Bhardwaj. Having an expansive career that spans around 42 years in optometry and optical field, he has also headed many major national and international optometry organisations.
Ajeet suggested an innovative method of marking a patient’s interpupillary distance, segment height and the effective diameter of the lens which will enable a customer to place an order remotely.
He explained the procedure of “Tele-Optometry”, which involves a revolutionary refractive device created by Houston University that enables a customer to get his prescription very easily. This innovative self-refractive and self-adjusting device has been tested and successfully used in many countries across the world.
Having procured this device, Ajeet further requested the AIIMS Institute to test the device and provide a report on the same. The institute has shared favourable suggestions that substantiate the accuracy of this device. Now, once the Indian optometrists/opticians are correctly trained and are confident in its usage, this device can be manufactured in India too.
Other innovative methods too were discussed which included:
– A simple Do-It-Yourself methodology where the customers can get IPD measurements by using a scale, camera and a mirror. Fitting parameters too can be ascertained in a simple manner.
– Visual acuity can be noted by sending the Snellen chart to the customer and them seeing it from 10 feet of distance.
– Astigmatic fan also can be shared with the customer through email or Whatsapp.
– The Duochrome test can be done very easily from the comfort and safety of customer’s home.
– The colour vision chart too can be shared with the customer to find out whether any colour correction is required.
Sudershan Binani, President of Himalaya Group and the current President of the All India Optical Federation was optimistic about the above methods helping many customers who will benefit with this remote eye exams and eye correction glasses.
Sanjeev Madan, Partner, Bon Ton Opticians and the brain behind the All India Optical Federation of India also was of the opinion that these methods shows potential and would safeguard the optometrists and customers.
Anup R Kumar and Amman A Kumar, Partners at R Kumar Opticians and qualified optometrists too contributed with vital questions and inputs.
Further on, Ajay Bhootra, Clinical Head at Himalaya Group asked relevant questions that pertained to optical parameters.
The webinar also included live questions from the participants. This discussion concluded with Ajeet Bhardwaj assuring support from his team on training other optometrists about this method and collaboration on manufacturing this device in India. Though this method is not suggested as a complete replacement of an inclusive eye examination, it could still offer a 90% level of accuracy.
If all goes well with the availability of this device and training, this could be a fantastic solution to the optical industry to tide over these challenging times. This will also empower customers with a clear vision, which is the ultimate goal of the optical industry.
Please find the webinar link here below: