Making eye care accessible has been a goal of Jewell E. Ginter, OD, since 1982 when she opened Ginter Eye Care in Lubbock, Texas. “We like to offer every avenue we can for our patients,” explains Sarah McKinnon, who is the practice’s billing and human resources manager and oversees the front desk. Whether that’s medical eye care, vision therapy, laser refractive surgery or the best ophthalmic products on the market, Dr. Ginter, her four associates—three of whom are women—and the staff want their patients to be able to take advantage of their high-quality recommendations.
It starts in the exam room, and the doctors talk about eyeglasses specific for each patient’s lifestyle. “The doctors always highly recommend a second pair of eyeglasses,” McKinnon says. That often includes sunglasses for both eyeglass and contact lens wearers, as well as a backup pair for emergencies or to give their eyes a break from contact lens wear.
These essential purchases are explained with an emphasis on the benefits for ocular health, such as protection from harmful light or glare. Dr. Ginter and her associates often talk about antireflective treatments that offer bluelight-blocking technology, which can reduce glare outside and indoors when using tablets, smartphones and computers. “When the doctor mentions these products, it comes across to the patient as what he or she needs,” McKinnon says, as opposed to a hard sale when the patient first hears the options from the optical staff.
Ginter Eye Care offers a variety of payment options to make its accessible eye care more affordable. “We accept all credit cards, or cash or checks. The CareCredit credit card was another step,” McKinnon says of the partnership that began more than eight years ago, before she came to the practice. The practice incorporated CareCredit as a payment option back then to provide another option for patients.
The staff might bring up this additional method of payment in the optical as the patient is selecting eyewear, especially if he or she cannot decide between two frames. “If a patient is hesitant, the optician might say, ‘Have you heard of CareCredit?’” McKinnon says. With special financing for six months with monthly payments on purchases of $200 or more, approved patients often decide to get both pairs because they know they can afford to pay off the purchase in that amount of time. “It doesn’t end up hurting their pocketbook.”
The staff also can recommend this option when contact lens patients debate an annual supply purchase. “The year’s supply is always more beneficial,” McKinnon says. It helps patients keep on track with compliant replacement, and there is typically a high-value rebate available for annual supply purchases. CareCredit can allow a patient to take advantage of a great value price, encouraging patients to replace contact lenses as instructed. The staff has found that patients also opt for this choice when there is medical testing that is not covered by insurance, and McKinnon says another great use could be to pay for vision therapy.
The staff displays signage around the office, prompting patients to Ask Us About CareCredit. If patients want to apply, the staff can help them fill out and process applications right in the office over the phone or Internet. “It’s not just a credit card for our office,” the staff explains to patients. “There are many other places you can use it.” Patients are happy to find out that their veterinarian, dentist and even the local laser eye center, where Dr. Ginter is a co-owner, accepts CareCredit as payment.
Sponsored by CareCredit