October 2021

Time to Get in Action

From the SNAPP Board

With the wrap of another successful SNAPP meeting, now is a great time to reflect on some of the highlights as described by the SNAPP Board…

Lisa Hamilton, OD, SNAPP Board member, says the meeting inspired her to embrace the data and opportunities in the area of myopia management. Previously, she has only discussed it with a fraction of her patients, but she can’t wait to implement change and help tackle the disease. “I want doctors and staff to be talking consistently about the risks of myopia and educating all of our patients to show that our practice has options to slow the progression of this disease,” she says.

For Dr. Hamilton, future areas of improvement include doctor training, staff training and patient education materials.

Milissa Stone, Licensed Operator (LO) and Board member, shares that her biggest takeaway was from Dawn Gray’s PEPP log sheet presentation. “This is a great simple execution of a piece that we have overlooked in the past due to busy-ness. I am going to make sure that we are keeping a better eye on it,” she says.

In addition, the meeting provided excellent networking opportunities through the Meet Your Fellow Operators exercise. Everyone received a list of every attendee’s name, phone number and email next to a blank space to write one common thing that connected each attendee with another. For an hour, everyone scattered to talk to as many attendees as possible to bond over the same fun fact or hobby. “I hope that the activity One Common Thing helped connect more operators and that participants took home everyone’s contact information and keep in touch,” says Stone.

Board member Ken Kopolow, OD, says the meeting emphasized how critical it is that optometrists embrace a primary eye care model. The sessions presented by Joe DeLoach, OD, and Craig Thomas, OD, focused on medical billing and coding. The talks on equipment and clinical CE were helpful in maximizing strategies to remain competitive within the ever-changing healthcare landscape.

Plus, it was such fun to see people again. From enjoying the karaoke at Ellis Island to sampling the great dishes at the Vegas Test Kitchen, the opportunity to network and talk with each other in person was delightful.

The Board will soon begin making plans for the 2022 SNAPP meeting, to be held in conjunction with Vision Expo West in Las Vegas, Sept. 14-16, 2022.

Scenes from the meeting

Meeting education speakers (l-r): Dr. Mick Kling, Dr. Craig Thomas and Dr. Chris Knobbe

Thanks to the Sponsors

Sponsors’ Generosity Keeps SNAPP Program Going

The SNAPP meeting and year-round programs for the SNAPP membership would not be possible without the generous support of our sponsors. Make sure to thank the sponsors of the 2021 SNAPP Annual Meeting.


Bausch + Lomb

ABB Optical Group • Alcon • Johnson & Johnson Vision • Transitions


Allergan • AmCheck Las Vegas • CardConnect • ECR Vault • Eye Promise • Eyefinity • Eyefficient • Glaukos • LasikPlus • LensQuote • Luneau Technology • MacuLogix • National HealthCare Collections • Nidek • Oculus • Optos • Practice Compliance Solutions • QMI • RightEye • SNH Capital Partners • Sight Sciences • Sunbit • TearCare • Topcon Healthcare • VisionWeb • Weave

Creative Thinking

SnappGroupMasterminds Launches This Month

SNAPP is creating SnappGroupMasterminds, with its inaugural 2022 class of up to 20 charter members.

Program highlights: There will be one in-person and two virtual, confidential meetings with fellow SnappGroupMasterminds members. These meetings and participants will challenge your assumptions and find out what is limiting your success. You will gain a diversity of perspectives from those who have faced and overcome similar challenges.

Optimize: With the support of SnappGroupMasterminds, you will work toward one common goal—to make better decisions to benefit your business.

Connect: From your fellow SnappGroupMasterminds members, you will obtain as much unbiased feedback as possible on your business challenges.

Learn more by joining us at an informational Zoom meeting on Thursday, Oct. 28, 2021. SNAPP will be hosting three Zoom meetings for more information, all listed here in Eastern Time: 7:30, 8:30 and 9:30 p.m.

Value of the Meeting

First-time Attendee Already Marked Calendar for 2022

Jeremy Goetsch, OD, opened his first Pearle Vision location in 2011 and has since opened two more locations in Wisconsin. Despite being a long-term SNAPP member, he never had the chance to attend any annual meetings due to his busy schedule. Between emails from colleagues and a strong recommendation from SNAPP Board Member Lisa Hamilton, OD, he decided to free up some time for the recent 2021 SNAPP meeting in Las Vegas. “It was a great decision. I came back to my practice with several new business management strategies that I couldn’t have gained elsewhere,” he says.

Dr. Goetsch

Helpful takeaways applicable to everyone: Regardless of attendees’ roles or experience, there’s a spot for everyone in the meetings. “Everyone from my team was able to learn and bring something back. The information was applicable to all the members: optometrists, licensed operators (LOs) or key staff,” he says.

Dr. Goetsch especially was impressed by the quality of the speakers and an abundance of helpful resources, such as the COPE-approved CE courses. He gathered some great ideas on layering the medical aspects of optometry into the retail optical environment. Luckily, the SNAPP meetings are an excellent opportunity to strengthen business and marketing skills. Dr. Goetsch learned a number of operational benchmarking strategies at the meeting, refining the metrics for cost of goods, labor and success. “I can’t wait to implement these strategies and increase staff productivity and practice efficiency,” he says.

Expanding network: The SNAPP meeting was the perfect spot for Dr. Goetsch to put faces to names. “It was a wonderful experience to have open conversations with fellow LOs and managers from the meeting whom I couldn’t meet within my geographic area,” he says. Many of these face-to-face conversations have transitioned to ongoing relationships and sources of support. “I’m not afraid to ask questions because everyone comes from the Pearle Vision model, and I’m glad that I know I can provide the same support,” Dr. Goetsch says.

Even though the 2021 SNAPP meeting is still a recent memory, Dr. Goetsch already has the date for the 2022 meeting marked in his calendar. “It couldn’t have been a better first experience,” he says.

Bringing Thoughts to the Table

The 2021 SNAPP Las Vegas Meeting was meaningful for two reasons for Leslie Pacer, in Webster, New York. It was the first in-person eye care event she has attended since the COVID-19 pandemic began, and she also reached her 10th anniversary as an LO with her Pearle Vision franchise.

Bountiful information: While she could only meet people through a digital screen last year, Pacer was glad to see many familiar faces at the conference. “They are like my family, and I’m staying in touch with them outside the meeting, sharing tips and resources,” she says.

During the meeting, Pacer especially paid close attention to speakers and their presentations. “I thoroughly enjoyed the Myopia Management: Past, Present and Future course with Ryan Parker, OD. His presentations are always full of valuable information that I can implement in my practice,” Pacer says.

From the March 2020 meeting, her biggest takeaway was from David Kovar, who shared the efficiency of using two monitors at one workstation. “It’s been a game-changer and a great hit at the office. My staff loves it because checking insurances is 1000x easier,” she says.

Contributing to the conversation: Regardless of experience or occupation, everyone can bring something valuable to the meeting. During a think-tank conversation, Pacer shared how creating a QR code increased Google reviews, improving patient referrals and loyalty. Although she says that she was hesitant to bring it up, many attendees came up afterward to ask questions and receive advice. “Sometimes we don’t speak up because we assume everyone knows, but it’s great to put everything helpful out there. I love knowing that I can impact my peers positively and see a lightbulb going off,” Pacer says.

Still feeling the excitement after the event, Pacer cannot wait to attend next year’s meeting. “It was a great time to be with people again! The SNAPP Board members did a phenomenal job, yet again, and the amount of work is noticed and appreciated,” she says.

HR Corner from AmCheck

Traditional Leave or a Banked PTO Policy?

This infographic takes a look at the pros and cons of time-off policies. The traditional leave specifies time for holidays, sick leave, bereavement leave, jury duty and more. A personal time off (PTO) plan, now offered by 40 percent of employers, establishes a set number of days and allows the employee to decide how and why to use them.

There’s no right answer. AmCheck says, “Although many companies are gravitating toward PTO, and some even offer unlimited PTO, every organization is different and has unique needs and corresponding practices. Ultimately, leaning on your organization’s values, business needs and workplace culture will help you create a time-off policy that works best for you and your employees.”

In the News

Another Study Shows Link Between Screen Time and Myopia Risk

A new study published in October 2021 in The Lancet Digital Health revealed a connection between screen time and higher risk and severity of myopia in children and young adults. The authors revealed that high levels of smart device screen time was associated with a 30 percent increase in myopia risk.

When combined with excessive computer use, the risk increased to 80 percent. Click here for more information.

At-home COVID-19 Testing Kits Approved

On Oct. 6, the FDA approved Acon Laboratories’ rapid, at-home COVID-19 test, making testing quicker and more accessible.

The authorization of a mass-produced testing kit will be important in the continued fight against COVID-19. Click here for more information.

Presbyopia Is Taking People by Surprise, Survey Says

A recent Allergan survey found that 65 percent of 1,000 survey respondents ages 40 to 55 said that they were not prepared to have their eyesight worsen as they got older.

Approximately a quarter of the respondents said they were in denial that their near vision was getting worse. Respondents’ lifestyles were also impacted, as about 50 percent said they decreased or gave up a hobby because of their blurry near vision. Click here for more information.

Cancer-fighting Contact Lenses

University of Florida Health ophthalmology specialist Gibran S. Khursid, MD, found that tiny particles of radioactive iodine can deliver tightly focused radiation to eye cancer, oruveal melanoma.

The tiny particles are attached to a gold implant, radioactive iodine plaque, and sewn onto the surface of the eye. It stays on for four days, delivering precise doses of radiation to the cancer. Click here for more information.

New Contact Lens Innovation Filters HEVL

Alcon and HPO entered multiple licensing agreements through work focused on protecting the human retina from high energy visible light (HEVL). The partnership was formed to provide HEVL-filtering solutions for contact lens patients, which would reduce digital eye strain. Click here for more information.

Getty Images photo credits—presbyopia: Björn Forenius; cancer-fighting: Cecile Lavabre; and HEVL: Steve Allen.

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