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    How you can go green in the optometry practice

    The views expressed here belong to the author. They do not necessarily represent the views of Optometry Times or UBM Medica.

    Learning facts about history has been much easier for me as an adult than when I was in grade school. My first-grade daughter is teaching me so much about history. This week’s book was about Earth Day. A U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, Gaylord Nelson, founded Earth Day in 1970, and it has been celebrated annually since that time on April 22. In 1990, his efforts were revamped to include recycling efforts.

    This got me thinking—how am I addressing this in my office now, and what can I do better?   

    Go paperless

    Healthcare reform and the move to electronic medical records is helping medicine to use less paper than ever. Some offices, like that of Carol Nason, OD, of West Palm Beach, FL, have been successful going 100 percent paperless. How?

    She has implemented the use of laminated forms and dry erase markers for patients to use at check in for HIPPA consents and health surveys. Then, just like paper, the laminate forms are scanned into patient charts, cleaned off, and reused for the next patient— brilliant! 

    More from Dr. O’Dell: 3 tips to use LinkedIn to advance your career

    The never-ending pile of junk mail, it kills 100 million trees yearly with the average adult receiving 41 pounds yearly, and 44 percent of this ending up in landfills, unopened.

    Postcard reminders can add to this waste. Ask patients to enroll in email or text recalls for appointment reminders. Look into reducing the amount of junk mail your practice receives using the following websites: DMAchoice.org or catalogchoice.org.

    Email correspondence is yet another way to reduce paper in the office; email patient letters to providers in place of faxing or mailing. 

    Next: Efficient technology

    Leslie E O’Dell, OD, FAAO
    Leslie E. O’Dell, OD, FAAO, is the director of the Dry Eye Treatment Center at May Eye Care Center in Hanover, PA. Dr. O’Dell lectures ...

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