Do you have a good relationship with your local optometrists? If not, you and your patients are missing out!
Below, we’ve compiled the top three reasons why you need a strong co-management network.
1. Most people don’t go straight to the ophthalmologist
People who aren’t involved in the medical field don’t always know the difference between an optometrist and an ophthalmologist. Because of this, they’re more likely to turn to their usual eye doctor when something goes wrong – and more often than not, it’s the same doctor who prescribes them their glasses.
By partnering with an OD, you can bring these patients to your practice. Provide your OD with branded patient educational materials (e.g., brochures, posters) about cataract surgery, refractive surgery, and other ophthalmic procedures to help them inform their patients. A strong referral network is also key.
2. ODs know their patients better than you do
Oftentimes, ODs have been taking care of their patients for years – or even decades. When a patient visits your practice with a problem, it can be difficult to get a complete picture of this history. Do they tend to have high expectations? What do they think about monovision? What are their hobbies?
Optometrists can pass this information on to you, making it easier for your practice to provide these patients with the care they need.
3. Patients can get help closer to home
In certain parts of the country – particularly in rural areas – patients may need to travel long distances to reach an ophthalmologist. If you maintain a strong relationship with your ODs, you can entrust them with pre- and post- operative care. Since patients don’t need to travel as far to reach their ODs, they’re less likely to cancel their appointments and more likely to seek help regarding potential complications.
(If you were worried about a strange, dry sensation in your eye, would you take off work and drive two hours to see your ophthalmologist?)
Let’s say you already know the importance of co-management, but you’re having trouble building your OD network. We have another blog that touches on ways to improve your OD network.
We also have Sightpath Creative, an ophthalmic marketing agency that can help you market LASIK, cataract surgery, and any other ophthalmic procedure you perform for your patients. We’ll even provide you with co-management marketing materials to help you strengthen your OD network.