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    3 tips to improve doctor-driven dispensing as a student


    2. Do not restructure your exams

    It is far easier to make a habit than to break a habit. This puts student doctors in a fantastic position to implement doctor-driven dispensing.

    Many ODs have long settled into a successful exam format. Exams may consist of some variant of check a patient’s vision, health, write his Rx, and send him to the optical. It is easy to see why a change from an already successful, proven, and comfortable method can be daunting.

    As a student doctor, there is nothing we do that is quite comfortable yet. I change my grip daily on my 20D lens and still cannot figure out whether to check blood pressure before or after performing chair skills.

    Related: Respect patients' trust during eyewear selection

    It is a no-brainer to start forming good habits as a student doctor and tack on a few moments for doctor-driven dispensing in every exam until it becomes natural like the rest of our skills.

    3. Capitalize on the human element

    Third, and most importantly, in these changing times for optometry, it is crucial to create a human element for our profession to continue to thrive.

    We are entering an era in which online alternatives to medicine are gaining traction with patients who prefer convenience over quality. When we graduate, I can imagine the situation will only be exacerbated.

    Low prices and instant gratification are understandably tempting. It is unreasonable to try to race an online program that does only a fraction of what we do.

    While in school, student doctors can choose to be ODs who center around the patient's specific, human needs. By showing the patient that his health and happiness, not just his glasses, are at the core of what we do, we will set ourselves apart as ODs in an instant. That is a service no computer can provide.

    Doctor-driven dispensing is on deck

    Doctor-driven dispensing is the next step for our profession to evolve. Using it as a student, especially with all the fresh knowledge we have at our disposal, makes good sense.

    Read more from Ms. May here

    Shelby May
    Shelby is a third-year student at Southern College of Optometry. She is particularly interested in Vision Therapy and Pediatrics. Any ...


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