Many patients wonder if having a vision plan is necessary. As a provider of vision care, we can give you the prospective of a provider on how these plans work. It is important to realize the difference between an Insurance company and Vision plan. Insurances are set up to reduce the potential risk of a catastrophic injury, disease or financial hardship. The insurance company collects premiums to invest and calculate the risk of paying more in claims than they collect in premiums and or can make in investments. Vision plans on the other hand are selling plans to people with a specific need to get glasses and or contact lenses. How many vision plan are sold to people not in the need for glasses or contacts?
In order to make money these plans must charge more in premiums than they pay out in coverage. Vision plans will negotiate with providers to accept low reimbursements in exchange for increased volume (more patients). For providers to make this work they need to see more patients in a shorter time and find ways to cut costs. This creates an inability of providers to put patient care first, as speed and cost cutting is paramount to business survival. Some providers have started to recognize the problems with this model and have decided patient satisfaction and care is more important to them professionally. This is why your provider may not take the vision plan you are looking for. If you have decided to choose to purchase a vision plan, contact your eye care provider and ask what are the pros and cons of the different plans. Ultimately you will have to determine what you value about your eye care.
When cost is the only determining factor in choosing your eye care, you can not beat a vision plan for value. However if you are interested in quality of care, eye health, choice of products, warranties and consultation from your Doctor and optician on the optimal way to provide the best vision possible for you and your lifestyle, a vision plan does not provide the best value.