When a law is passed related to the practice of optometry, it’s up to the regulatory process to define the details. Everything from how much Medicare pays for an eye exam to what, exactly, constitutes a prescription verification is determined by the regulatory agencies of the federal government.
As a legislated profession, optometry is defined by the laws governing its practice. However, legislation rarely determines the finer points of the law. Staff and volunteers in the AOA Advocacy Group work with regulatory agencies every day to define the details that determine the impact of legislation on doctors of optometry and their patients. This happens in the form of official comment letters, meetings with federal officials, collaboration with others in the health care community, consultation with doctors regarding the precise details that go into a single Medicare code, the development of an optometric registry and much more.
The AOA is hosting a profession-wide videoconference, Thursday, July 29, to discuss rapidly developing legislation to expand Medicare benefits and is seeking members’ input to inform advocacy.
With the competitions officially underway July 23, the AOA is capitalizing on its partnership with surfer Caroline Marks and USA Surfing to raise awareness about the essentialness of regular, comprehensive eye care and vision health. Doctors of optometry can get involved with the See and Be Seen campaign.
Regulators have taken a “hands-off” approach to this key ACA provision for a decade, but now members of Congress encourage full implementation of the law as originally intended.