CooperVision launches myopia action plan for ECPs
The online resource aims to support practitioners to “get started” in myopia management
03 May 2022
The downloadable resource details the seven steps that the company says eye care practitioners (ECPs) should consider when seeking to introduce myopia management into practice, and provides advice for each.
The plan has been created in collaboration with key opinion leaders in myopia who represent a range of disciplines and who have been offering myopia management to patients for a number of years.
Speaking exclusively to OT about the action plan, optometrist and CooperVision’s head of professional services for the UK and Ireland, Christina Olner, explained: “We wanted to create something that was easily accessible in order to help ECPs to get started in myopia management if it is not something they are currently doing.”
What the data says
Olner highlighted predictions that “50% of the world’s population will be myopic by 2050,” adding “what’s perhaps more pertinent for those in the UK is that, on our own shores, myopia has more than doubled over the last 50 years in children between the ages of 10 and 16.”
The steps in the action plan have been designed to acknowledge and demystify the main barriers that the manufacturer often hears stated as reasons holding ECPs back from offering myopia management, including the required skillset to fit lenses, and the confidence to raise the topic with parents and mange concerns.
On fitting myopia management contact lenses, Olner stressed: “We hear ECPs say that they feel that they do not have the expertise to fit myopia management lenses, but we know that, using MiSight 1 day as an example, this requires only the skill needed for fitting soft contact lenses.”
Olner encouraged ECPs to “use the action plan as both a resource and a reference tool in order to learn from their peers when they are faced with barriers.”
Equally there is a wealth of evidence referred to in the plan, providing ECPs with the opportunity to unpick that evidence utilising some of the peer reviewed journal articles that underpin the content,” she added.
ECPs who fed into the action plan include: optometrist and clinical director, Keyur Patel; optometrist and immediate past president of the British Contact Lens Association, Indie Grewal; senior optometrist, Luke Allen; consultant ophthalmologist, John Bolger; therapeutic optometrist and clinical advisor for the College of Optometrists, Paramdeep Bilkhu; clinical lead optometrist, Rebecca Donnelly, and professor of optometry, Nicola Logan.
Visit CooperVision’s website to download the action plan.
Myopia action plan
CooperVision’s head of professional services for the UK and Ireland, Christina Olner, outlines what the plan involves
1. Use your existing skill set and build confidence.
Olner: “This is about demystifying the common misconception that myopia management requires specialist skills or equipment. It speaks to ECPs who are concerned that they do not have the skillset required to get involved.”
2. Raise the subject early and involve the whole family
Olner: “The earlier we start talking about myopia and reinforcing that this is something that can be managed, the more likely families are to understand the value of helping to slow the progression of myopia.”
3. Keep the message simple, avoid scaremongering and adopt a personalised approach
Olner: “This is about supporting ECPs to understand that their communication style will need to be tailored to each family they are talking to. An effective approach that our key opinion leaders expressed was centred around adopting good eye health rather than focusing on worrying complications. Talking about how myopia management can help maintain good eye health into adulthood is a nice, gentle way to bring patients and their parents on board.”
4. Reframe myopia as a condition that needs management as well as correction
Olner: “When we think about myopia management products as a whole, we often omit the fact they are both correcting vision and helping to manage the progression of myopia. They are dual-purpose.”
5. Managing parental concerns by sharing the evidence and providing them with additional resources
Olner: “This is about ECPs taking advantage of all the evidence-based research that is available and sharing with parents the information they need in an easily digestible format, such as through patient leaflets.”
6. Adopt myopia management as part of your plan to grow your business
Olner: “Offering myopia management can really raise the profile of an optometry practice and increase its appeal.”
7. Educate and activate the wider community
Olner: “ECPs are community-based healthcare practitioners and they are perfectly placed to influence and educate their communities about the environmental factors of myopia and how to help mitigate the risks linked to the rising prevalence of childhood myopia.”
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