Prescription Verification System
We have implemented a prescription verification system that is in compliance with US FCLCA (The Fairness to Contact Lens Consumers Act).
VERIFICATION PROCESS HAPPENS IN 2 WAYS, EITHER YOU PROVIDE US:
1. Copy of your valid contact lens prescription by upload
2. Your eye doctor's name and phone number and allow us to contact them by fax / phone / email to verify the validity of your contact lens prescription.
The verification process takes 8 hours and if a response is not delivered from your eye doctor, your contact lens prescription will be assumed as valid and your order will be processed and shipped.
The Contact Lens Rule: A Guide For Prescribers And SellersSource:
United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
The Fairness to Contact Lens Consumers Act(FCLCA) increases consumers’ ability to shop around when buying contact lenses. The Act gives consumers certain rights, imposes duties on contact lens prescribers and sellers, and requires the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to develop and enforce implementing rules. In 2004, the FTC issued the Contact Lens Rule to spell out the Act’s requirements.
The Contact Lens Rule requires prescribers to give patients a copy of their contact lens prescriptions at the end of a contact lens fitting, even if the patient doesn’t ask for it. A patient who wants to buy contact lenses from another seller then may give the prescription to that seller. If a consumer doesn’t give his prescription to that seller, the seller must verify the prescription before selling the lenses.
The verification process works like this: the consumer provides prescription information to the seller, who then submits it to the prescriber in a verification request. The prescriber has eight-business-hours to respond. If the prescriber does not respond within the required time, the prescription is verified automatically, and the seller may provide contact lenses to the consumer.
According to the Rule, “prescriber” refers to anyone permitted under state law to issue prescriptions for contact lenses — including ophthalmologists, optometrists, and licensed opticians who also are permitted under state law to fit contact lenses (sometimes called “dispensing opticians”).
Give a copy of the contact lens prescription to the patient at the end of the contact lens fitting – even if the patient doesn’t ask for it. provide or verify the contact lens prescription to anyone who is designated to act on behalf of the patient, including contact lens sellers. In any response to a verification request, prescribers must correct any inaccuracy in the prescription, inform the seller if it’s expired and specify the reason if it’s invalid.
PRESCRIBERS CANNOT REQUIRE PATIENTS TO:
Buy contact lenses, pay additional fees or, sign a waiver or release in exchange for a copy of the contact lens prescription. Prescribers may require a patient to pay for the eye exam, fitting and evaluation before giving the patient a copy of the contact lens prescription, but only if the prescriber also requires immediate payment from patients whose eye exams show no need for glasses, contact lenses, or other corrective eye care products. Proof of valid insurance coverage counts as payment for purposes of this requirement. Prescribers cannot disclaim liability or responsibility for the accuracy of an eye examination.
The Rule allows prescribers to set prescription expiration dates – one year or more from the date the prescription is issued to a patient. If applicable state law requires a specific expiration period that is longer than one year, however, the prescriber must follow that law. A prescriber may set an expiration date of earlier than one year only if that date is based on the prescriber’s medical judgment about the patient’s eye health. In these cases, the prescriber must document the medical reason for the shorter expiration date with enough detail to allow for review by a qualified medical professional, and maintain the records for at least three years.
Sellers may provide contact lenses only when the customer presents his prescription in person, by fax, or by email if the prescription has been scanned and attached to the email. The customer also can give you permission to verify the prescription by “direct communication” with the prescriber.*
What is direct communication?
It’s a completed communication by phone, fax, or email. Direct communication by phone requires reaching and speaking to the intended recipient, or leaving an electronic voice message for the intended recipient. Direct communication by fax or email requires that the intended recipient actually get the fax or email message.
When verifying a contact lens prescription, sellers must provide the following information to the prescriber using direct communication:
Patient’s full name and address, contact lens power, manufacturer, base curve or appropriate designation, and diameter appropriate, quantity of lenses ordered, date of patient order, date and time of verification request, a contact person for the seller, including name, fax and phone numbers, a clear statement of the prescriber’s regular Saturday business hours if the seller is counting those hours as business hours under the Rule.
Under the Rule, a prescription is verified if the prescriber: confirms its accuracy to the seller via direct communication, informs the seller that the prescription is inaccurate and provides accurate information to the seller via direct communication, or fails to communicate with the seller within eight-business-hours of receiving a complete verification request. During the eight-business-hour period, the seller must give the prescriber a reasonable opportunity to verify the prescription.
Sellers must maintain prescriptions presented to them, prescription verification requests, and prescriber responses to the verification requests. If the sellers count a prescriber’s Saturday business hours, the sellers also have to keep a record of what those hours are and how the sellers learned of them. Keep these records for at least three years.
THE FINE PRINT
What practices are not allowed?
SELLERS MUST NOT:
Fill a prescription unless the seller has a copy of it or have verified it, as required by the Rule, fill a prescription if the prescriber tells them by direct communication within eight-business-hours after receiving the complete verification request that the prescription is inaccurate, expired, or otherwise invalid, alter prescriptions. If the sellers submit a verification request for a brand that is not the customer’s prescribed brand, the sellers may be violating the Rule by altering the prescription. The only exception is if the sellers have submitted a verification request for a brand that the customer told the seller is listed on their prescription. To qualify for this exception, must ask the customer to give the sellers the manufacturer or brand listed on their prescription, and the customer must have told them that information. For private label lenses, however, the sellers can substitute identical contact lenses made by the same manufacturer and sold under a different name.
WHAT’S A BUSINESS HOUR?
Prescriptions are verified automatically if the prescriber doesn’t respond to the seller’s verification request within eight-business-hours. A business hour is defined as one hour between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding federal holidays, in the prescriber’s time zone. If a seller determines that a particular prescriber has regular Saturday business hours, the seller also may count those Saturday hours as business hours under the Rule.
HOW IS THE “EIGHT-BUSINESS-HOUR” VERIFICATION PERIOD CALCULATED?
When calculating eight-business-hours, begin the verification period the first business hour after the prescriber receives a complete verification request and end it eight-business-hours later. For example, if the prescriber receives a request at 10 a.m. Monday, the prescriber must respond by 10 a.m. Tuesday. If there’s no response, the seller can provide the contact lenses at 10:01 a.m. Tuesday. If the verification request is received at 10 p.m. Monday, the response would be due by 5 p.m. Tuesday. If there’s no response, the seller can provide the lenses at 5:01 p.m. Tuesday.