Dear President Bray, Leader Messmer, Leader Lanane, Senator Charbonneau and
distinguished members of the Indiana State Senate:
Our coalition, Americans for Vision Care Innovation , strongly supports SB. 19, a critically important piece of legislation that will help increase access to vision care and lower the cost of contact lenses and glasses for Indiana consumers and taxpayers and we applaud the Indiana Senate for acting quickly and decisively in holding a hearing on January 22 on the bill.
This pro-innovation, pro-consumer bill would end the current ban on ocular telemedicine in Indiana and ensure Hoosiers have the right to get prescriptions for contact lenses and glasses renewed online. Indiana has a well-deserved reputation as a leader when it comes to telemedicine, connected care and entrepreneurial innovation, but the current state ban on ocular telemedicine threatens that reputation.
Americans for Vision Care Innovation is a bipartisan coalition of taxpayer advocates, consumer groups, think tanks and innovative companies working with leading eye doctors and health care experts, who have joined together to ensure consumers across the country have access to the latest cost-saving and time-saving eye care technologies. Members of our coalition compete against each other in the marketplace but are united in support of the use of telemedicine for vision care and online prescription renewal. We are proud to join with Indiana medical professionals and leading Indiana companies and community groups in support of SB. 19.
Allowing online vision checks in Indiana with the passage of SB. 19 will give consumers and taxpayers the option to do their vision checks at a time that is convenient for them and in the privacy of their own homes. It will also provide confidence in knowing their checks are performed by a licensed ophthalmologist. These online services are usually much less expensive than what consumers are charged in an optometrist’s office.
SB.19 will also increase access to vision care for Indiana families and especially help Hoosiers who live in communities and rural districts with little or no vision care providers and families who live in rural districts who don’t have access to vision care. It will also help working families whose work swing shifts or multiple jobs, folks who can’t get to an eye doctor’s office during “normal” business hours.
Online prescription renewal tests have been offered across the country for four years and currently supported in 38 states. Millions of online prescription renewal tests have been performed using online platforms and at this time we are unaware of a single adverse event, medical malpractice claim, or consumer initiated medical board complaint as a result of using these services.
More than 40 million Americans wear contact lenses and millions more wear glasses. Indiana contact lens and glasses consumers deserve the right to lower costs, more convenience and easier access to vision care. Americans for Vision Care Innovation stand ready to help move this bill into law and our members are happy to speak with you and your staff at any time to answer questions and offer support.
Americans for Tax Reform
Center for Freedom and Prosperity
League of United Latin American Citizens
National Hispanic Medical Association
National Taxpayers Union
Progressive Policy Institute
Smart Vision Labs
Taxpayers Protection Alliance