Hi everyone. You may have noticed that I have been rather quiet in my postings to the group recently. Do not be deceived by this as I have been hard at work developing the program for our special segment during VBD were calling Practice Independence. First a list of who has committed so far to being on the podium. They are Gary Gerber Scott Sedlacek Van Rue Cathy Stern Alan Glazier Nate Nathan Bonilla-Warford David Grosswald Julio Arroyo Nick Despotidis Scott Balestreri Alex Andrich and a few more to come. Quite an impressive group. The topics were covering will be VT, Myopia Control, Specialty Contact Lens Fitting, Sports Vision, Specialty Dispensing, Building An OD Referral Network and promoting what you have built. A very ambitious program to say the least! The agenda and registration will be posted in the near future. The Vision By Design general sessions, Bootcamp, Scleral Wet Lab will be up first but I anticipate posting course and content info before to long for Practice Independence. Information will be posted at www.orthokacademy.com and www.orthokmeeting.comas it becomes available.
Ok thats out of the way as we proceed to what will be an historic weekend in Chicago. Now its time for us to get together and make what we have begun a reality. The education is going to be great and our presenters will talk in an easy to understand fashion on how they have built successful and prosperous Optometric Specialties in a managed care environment in their own practices. They will explain how that specialty works, give you pointers on doing it in your own practice and how to promote it. We are an equal opportunity group we will have commercial ODs who will tell you how they did it inside a commercial setting! In other words what your going to be exposed to is nothing less then a primer on how to not only survive but thrive and prosper in a managed care world!
First some general thoughts and then I am counting on all my colleagues on this site who care about whats happening in our profession to contribute to this dialogue. Yes were going to build it but your going to need to come and contribute if this is going to take off like I believe it will. I would like to begin by stating that Practice Independence is not only an educational initiative but a movement. For everyone who attends our first meeting and curriculum you become automatically our first members! What do you get for all of that. When you attend future meetings after Chicago you will automatically receive a discount off the registration fee. We intend on putting together a flyer which will have pearls and insights of successful specialty practices which you will receive. Were going to be involving you in the development of an OD referral network which once its up an running will change the way we and our patients view our profession for the better! We also are going to use the feedback of our members to shape our curriculum in a way that will benefit you the most. Yes you can read that again. We are actually an organization that believes that our most important product is you! This is not something new for us however if you check out the IAO/OAA you will find such a group that is thriving along with its membership! We may in the future pick out a few of our members and travel to your office to teach you how to reach out to your fellow ODs and create an OD referral network in your own backyard. I myself have done this successfully in two specialty areas Ortho-K and Large Diameter Lenses and I will be sharing in Chicago as will lots of others.
Ok. Your getting the idea. Couple of rules of our group. We are apolitical. Thats right you can breathe now. We also are not for or against your participation in managed care. In fact as a movement and a group we are not taking a position. Our sole purposes is to help you grow an independent portion of your practice you can call your own either inside or outside of managed care and we are all about promoting Optometric Specialties. Thats it.
Now its your turn. To succeed we need you to both participate in our group and participate in our forums like this one. That newsletter will not happen without articles submitted and the sweat labor involved in getting all your information up so we can reach out. I can do only so much and will but we need you to contribute in whatever way you can. It hardly matters in that respect its the contribution itself that propels us forward to our destination. I am very excited by both the discussions I have had with my colleagues about Practice Independence and what I am hearing from our industry. We are a grass roots movement and group that will stay that way. I promise you that and we will always listen and never ever forget where we came from and who we are suppose to represent. Here is to our practice independence!--
- Cary M. Herzberg O.D., FIAO
President, International Academy of Orthokeratology
President, Orthokeratology Academy of America
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