SVOne user since January 2015
The practice of was founded in 1958 as a specialty office limited to contact lens care. In its over 50 years in existence, a national and even international reputation for excellence has developed in not just the contact lens field, but in general eyecare and laser vision correction as well.
Our office is located on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Most of our patients are busy, time- constrained professionals who expect high levels of care. These patients often have complicated contact lens issues, and that is why they wind up here at our specialty practice.
In Manhattan, our practice has four exam rooms. A centrally placed tabletop autorefractor services all rooms. As you can imagine, when the practice is busy, the autorefractor room becomes a bottleneck and slows down the flow of the day. The extra waiting time impacts our practice efficiency and customer service.
Technology that provides an objective refraction of the eye is needed in both resource-constrained as well as resource-rich environments. I see this need firsthand since I divide my time between VisionSpring, a social enterprise that works to ensure affordable access to eyeglasses in the poorest reaches of the world, and my Manhattan-based private practice.
The new SVOne handheld, smartphone-based autorefractor is a powerful solution in both developing and developed world settings. This portable, Shack- Hartmann wavefront aberrometer can be attached to a smartphone to objectively determine the refractive error of the eye. In resource-constrained environments, it is often difficult or impossible to find people with top notch retinoscopy skills and existing autorefractors are too expensive or difficult to transport. In a US-based setting, this technology holds great promise to improve patient flow, improve access for those in wheelchairs, or conduct exams in nursing homes or school settings where the doctor must come to the patient.
Well-designed trials have demonstrated that the SVOne has similar accuracy and repeatability to the retinoscopy of a seasoned optometrist, and greater accuracy and repeatability than the Topcon KR-1W and the Righton Retinomax 3. Additionally, the SVOne results were 96% correlated with subjective refraction.
Given my work at VisionSpring, anyone who has a device that can help make refraction care more accessible comes through our door. We assess many technologies and we don’t expect a new product to be perfect right out of the gates. What I have been impressed with the the rapid improvement and response to doctors needs that Yaopeng and Marc have been able to implement with the SVOne. Every time I see them there is a new feature or improvement based on real feedback from myself and other vision care providers.
In my practice the SVOne has the ability to double our capacity at a fraction of the cost of a tabletop autorefractor.
Worldwide, there are 2.5 billion people whose vision could be improved with a pair of eyeglasses. Of those, 624 million are living with debilitating vision impairment, or blindness. 15 million are children. Half of all disability among children in the developing world is due to poor vision that could easily be corrected by eyeglasses. Collectively, this results in an estimated $202 billion annual drain to the global economy.
The SVOne holds promise in helping us address the massive issue of uncorrected refractive errors worldwide while providing us with a powerful, affordable option for improving our ability to provide efficient refractive care to patients in our practices and community.