Given how much we rely on our eyesight, it’s surprising that only half the people who have insurance or benefits that cover eye care schedule an annual eye exam. In many cases, policy holders don’t realize that their health benefits cover eye care, or what types of eye care.
The good news: most vision plans cover not only eye exam but also offer full coverage or discounts on eyeglass frames, contact lenses and, in many cases, specialized screenings and treatments.
Make the most of your vision benefits to maintain your family’s eye health.
Learn More About Your Plan
While getting coverage for vision care is a priority for most households, it’s easy to ignore the details of your policy. Taking the time to learn about your coverage translates into money you can save on eye exams, lenses, frames and treatments.
Research your policy’s details, including:
- Lens enhancement
- Frame allowance
- Screening for eye conditions
- Eye treatments
- Family vs. individual coverage
Obtain a membership card or keep your membership information handy, so you can use it during your next eye doctor appointment.
Locate an Eye Doctor in Your Network
If you don’t already have an eye doctor who accepts your eye care insurance, choose one in your network, in your geographical location. Do some research to determine if the in-network eye doctor offers all of the services you require.
It is important to establish a relationship with a specific practice whose eye doctors will perform eye exams and provide eye care to you and your family. Steer clear of out-of-network retail eyecare services or websites that claim to accept your insurance or benefits, but only for temporarily discounted services that may not benefit you.
Schedule an Annual Eye Exam
Annual eye exams are covered by most insurance plans and benefits, and are one of the most important steps you can take to protect your family’s eye health. Eye Exams can spot refractive errors like nearsightedness in children before they negatively affect a child’s performance in school.
Annual eye exams can also detect potentially sight-threatening conditions like cataracts, macular degeneration and glaucoma early, before the patient experiences any symptoms and significant vision loss sets in. Additionally, yearly eye exams assess whether your current prescription for contact lenses or eyeglasses is still suitable, and whether you need an upgrade.
Take Advantage of Discounts and Premium Plans
Most benefits and insurance plans have premium versions that may cost a bit more but can maximize savings. Premier programs can offer:
- A wider selection of eye doctors in your area
- Access to eye care specialists
- A wider variety of frames and lenses
- Alternative and high-tech treatments
- Special bonus offers
Look for New Deals on Frames and Lenses
Eyeglasses and contact lenses can be a significant investment and, without eye care coverage, can strain your budget. Learn whether your benefits plan includes recently reduced prices on frames and lenses.
Receive updates from your provider to stay current on discounts for special items, such as photochromic lenses, prescription sunglasses, anti-reflective coatings and designer frames.
Many plans offer a deep discount on a second pair of eyeglasses or contact lenses – often as much as 20%. A spare pair ensures peace of mind when glasses are broken or misplaced.
Dr. Ben Giddens at Giddens Optometry in Georgetown accepts various eye care plans. We offer annual eye exams for the entire family, diagnostic screening and treatments for eye conditions and a full range of frames, lenses and contact lenses to improve your vision.
Q: What type of eyewear do insurance plans generally cover?
- A: Although every type of insurance or vision benefits plan is different, most cover an annual eye exam and prescription eyeglasses and contact lenses. Coverage of additional or replacement glasses will depend on the plan, but some offer one replacement pair of glasses annually.
Q: Are photochromic lenses covered by vision benefits plans?
- A: Photochromic lenses are clear indoors and darken when they are exposed to sunlight. They shield eyes from exposure to glare and potentially damaging UV rays. Photochromic features can be added to prescription eyeglasses, but they raise the cost of the lenses. Fortunately, photochromic lenses are at least partially covered by many vision benefits plans, but the amount will depend on the plan, your eye condition and type of photochromic lenses and eyeglasses you choose.
Quality Frames For Prescription Eyeglasses & Computer Glasses. Visit Giddens Optometry for an eye exam and eyeglasses that match your style.