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The Importance of Managed Vision Care and Your Customer Base

Insurance is a huge component of the business of healthcare, and likewise, vision insurance bolsters the optical industry. Pearle Vision has a strong relationship with EyeMed, the nation’s second largest vision benefits company.

EyeMed has approximately 18,000 clients and more than 58 million funded benefit members, 98% of whom use in-network providers1 like Pearle Vision. EyeMed members constitute 30% of the managed vision care market.

In the optical industry, potential customers are divided into two groups: those who have managed vision care (MVCs) and those who do not, who are “free to choose” (FTCs) where they obtain vision care. Since 2014, more than 3.8% of Americans have moved from the FTC pool to MVC. Today, 56% of the U.S. population are MVCs2, with coverage often provided by employers. Among U.S. companies, 83% of major companies and 44% of smaller companies provide vision benefits.2

EyeMed partners with more than 60 health plans, including Anthem, Aetna and Humana (which includes Tri-Care), and Pearle Vision EyeCare Centers accept about 75% of the MVC market.

Because of the established relationship between Pearle Vision and EyeMed, and the standard of care provided at Pearle Vision EyeCare Centers, EyeMed helps to promote Pearle Vision in its national marketing materials. And through the PLUS Provider program, Pearle Vision receives prominent placement on the EyeMed provider locator, increasing visibility of Pearle Vision EyeCare Centers.

This year, the pandemic forced regional and statewide lockdowns, forcing many Americans to delay routine care, including eye exams. In the fourth quarter of the year, vision care providers anticipate a surge in appointments for such care, as those in the MVC group try to take advantage of their coverage before the end of the year. Regular vision care is critical to the 183 million U.S. adults who use some form of vision correction.3

Because EyeMed members are among those who receive annual benefits, and therefore who are likely to have eye exams every year, members  could be considered twice as valuable to vision care providers as FTC patients.

U.S. managed vision coverage grows by 3% to 4% annually4, with EyeMed growing fastest among vision benefits companies. EyeMed has reported an 8% compound annual growth rate for the last four years.

That’s great news for Pearle Vision licensed owners, who can expect an expanded and growing potential customer and patient base across the optical category.

1 EyeMed, 2018 (Publicly available information)

2 Vision Council and NAVCP, 2019

3 VisionExpoEast.com, 2014

4 Vision Council Report Card