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Q: How long is the examination visit?
A: Plan for 2 hours for your first visit. Subsequent visits are usually 30-60 minutes. A low vision examination is unlike any other eye examination. Much of what is required for the doctor to properly advise you comes from discussions you have with the doctor. These discussions pertain to how the loss of vision is affecting you, as well as establishing goals for the doctor and staff to pursue in assisting you in identifying the right devices and treatment.
Q: Is the examination covered by insurance?
A: Sometimes. Depending upon what insurance you have, some components of the examination may be covered, while other components are not. For example, the “refraction” portion of the evaluation is the part used to identify the correct optics of your prescription, is NOT covered. While in most cases, the medical assessment of the status of your vision, and the professional advice from the doctor IS USUALLY covered.
Q: Who does the examination?
A: In most cases it is a team approach. Staff at the office will coordinate preparing your file by asking you some initial questions. A thorough history of your vision is then taken by a technician. A technician will also complete the general preliminary testing required for the doctor. Then the doctor will do a deeper history and then complete the testing he or she required to best advise you. Devices that have been recommended by the doctor are typically dispensed by a technician, and any optical needs will be provided by the opticians.
Q: Why do i have to come back again?
A: Low vision care is not simply “getting new glasses.” Some patients require repeat visits to identify the right devices for different activities they do during a day at home or at work. Also, there ore often times situations where rehabilitative training or therapy are required.
Q: Does someone come to my home?
A: Sometimes. Depending upon your situation and your goals, sometimes a technician, or a therapist will be assigned to work with you at home. This might be to assist you in setting up your devices, or possibly assessing your home environment and making recommendations for enhancing daily living activities such as lighting and ergonomics.