Tips from a vision benefits pro: Value-adds can deliver significant value

While the foundation of a good vision plan is coverage for routine eye exams and basic vision correction, the reality is that some employees need or want more. As an employer leveraging a vision plan to attract and retain top talent, it’s in your best interest to accommodate a wide variety of vision needs.

Tip 6: Vision plan value-adds

For example, some individuals avoid having a full eye exam because they don’t want traditional eye dilation. Maybe they need to get back to work or other responsibilities, and can’t afford to wait for the vision effects (sensitivity to light; blurred vision, trouble focusing up close, including trouble reading) to wear off. But without a full eye exam, an eye doctor can’t see the optic nerve and the entire retina. If your doctor can’t get a full view of the back of the eye, you’re missing out on some of the benefits of a vision exam because a full exam allows your doctor to see early signs of diabetes, high blood pressure, and conditions that could lead to vision loss. People who want the benefits of eye dilation without the drawbacks can upgrade to a retinal imaging exam instead – there’s no downtime!

Other popular vision benefits upgrades include progressive lenses or “no-line” bifocals and Transitions lenses, which provide UVA/UVB protection and are photosensitive, so people get to have sunglasses and clear lenses all in one.

To keep vision coverage affordable for everyone, a good vision plan will offer these upgrades at a fixed fee for members. This way your employees have access to the upgrades they need or want at a discounted price, and it’s easy to understand what they’ll pay out of pocket. Here’s an example of upgrade savings in action:1

In this example, the member gets all the upgrades they want, at a savings of $443 or 56%!

Along with the upgrades available under a vision plan, most will offer additional health and wellness savings that can provide significant value. For example, Anthem offers an $800 discount on Lasik surgery, which is not traditionally covered under health or vision plans.2

Seek out a carrier that gives your employees – and you – more bang for their buck. Making fixed price upgrades available at a discounted rate lets your employees get what they want and need, while keeping your costs in check. Everyone wins.

1 Blue View Vision Plan with $10 exam copay and $130 frame allowance.

2 SpecialOffers Program. $800 discount applies when members choose a featured Premier LASIK Network provider

John Thorp is Staff Vice President of Vision Services at Anthem, Inc., and is a past board member of the National Association of Vision Care Plans (NAVCP). He is committed to improving the lives of the people Anthem serves through the integration of Blue View Vision with Anthem Whole Health Connections.