Press Release.

July 06, 2020
1 min read

Patient safety advocates oppose updated contact lens Rx release rules


Press Release.

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An industry group is concerned over the Federal Trade Commission’s changes to the Contact Lens Rule that permit computer-generated phone calls to verify prescriptions and require more stringent documentation for prescription release.

The Health Care Alliance for Patient Safety said in a press release that it will continue to work with Congressman Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) and Congressman Michael C. Burgess, MD (R-Texas) to pass the Contact Lens Prescription Verification Modernization Act, or HR 3975, to protect patients.

Rush said in the release that HR 3975 would correct the “outrageous loophole” of robocalls “by prohibiting automated verification calls, a practice that has no place in verifying sensitive medical information.”

A safer, more responsible and efficient verification would be email, the alliance said in the release, a cost-effective method that could provide clear, written communication to ensure patients receive their correct prescription.

Alliance chairperson Deanna Alexander, OD, said in the release that continued use of the “antiquated prescription verification” method “means incorrect prescriptions will continue to be sent to patients, which could lead to adverse vision health outcomes.”

The final rule from the FTC, announced June 23, also requires eye doctors to collect, maintain and store for 3 years signed paperwork that acknowledges the patient received their prescription.

Alexander said this requirement is an administrative burden that does not improve patient care and health outcomes.

She said the alliance “will continue to advocate for more effective means of communications with patients that don’t shift physician offices’ focus away from patient care.”

Burgess, a cosponsor of HR 3975, said in the release, “I will continue working to ensure that patients and their doctors [remain] at the center of prescribing and safe use of regulated medical devices.”