We could pretend there are more important things to discuss, but we won’t ignore the monster in the air around us everywhere. Below are some of the latest COVID-19 stories related to the optometric profession.

• The FDA issued immediate guidance to help expand the capability of remote ophthalmic assessment and monitoring devices (eg, visual acuity charts, visual field devices, tonometers) to help facilitate patient care while reducing patient and health care provider contact and exposure to COVID-19.

• TECLens donated 10,000 PPE face shields to the Montefiore Hospital System in Bronx, New York, for distribution to its hospitals’ frontline care givers. (via)

• The American Academy of Optometry and the Associations of Schools and Colleges established a virtual clinical training program to help keep optometry students on track for graduation despite being unable to see patients in person because of the COVID-19 crisis.

• A recent email sent out by AOA President Barbara L. Horn, OD, announced that the in-person Optometry’s Meeting 2020 scheduled for June 24–28 in National Harbor, Maryland/Washington, D.C., has been cancelled for the first time ever, citing growing concerns over the global spread of COVID-19.


Is it safe to wear my contact lenses during the COVID-19 pandemic?

In short, yes—as long as you follow proper wear and care instructions. (via)
That is:
• Properly wash and dry hands before lens insertion and removal.
• Regularly disinfect of lenses (or dispose of daily wear lenses).
• Discontinue lens wear if sick.


Need a job? There’s a career fair for that.

The 2020 Virtual Career Fair was created to help optometrists who’ve been laid off as a result of the novel coronavirus crisis as well as fourth-year students looking for employment. The 2-day event will take place April 21-22.

Blind and visually impaired excluded in COVID-19 information.

We’re in the middle of a pandemic—everyone wants to know what’s going on. Unfortunately, for those who are blind and visually impaired, information from the government and news sources remains largely inaccessible. That’s because charts and infographics that make it easy to understand and digest information for sighted individuals aren’t readily available in a tactile format. Software developer Tyler Littlefield, himself blind with only light perception, created a fully accessible COVID-19 statistics tracker that converts data regarding the pandemic to a text format, making it easy for people using screen reading software to navigate and understand. (via)


Are you making use of telemedicine during this time?

Hopefully you are, but if you aren’t, you’re not alone. In the latest special COVID-19 episode of The MOD Pod, hosts Jessilin Quint, OD, MS, MBA, FAAO, and Frank Won, OD, spoke with guests Josh Johnston, OD, FAAO, and Jerry L. Robben, OD, about why now is the perfect time to adopt the technology, liability concerns, reimbursement tips, and more. Click here to watch the replay. Watch tonight’s episode, “I’m Laid Off/Furloughed/Fired, Now What?” on Facebook Live at 8:30 pm EDT.

Yes, I’m still activated with the National Guard, but The MOD Squad’s got you covered. Stay safe and healthy out there!