WHAT IS A REFRACTION?
Refraction is the process of determining the eye’s refractive error, or need for corrective glasses and/or contact lenses.
WHY IS IT SOMETIMES NECESSARY?
Refraction is sometimes necessary depending on the patient’s diagnosis and/or complaints presented. For example, if a patient is experiencing blurred vision or a decrease in visual acuity on the eye chart, a refraction would be needed to see if this is due to a need for glasses or due to medical problem.
A refraction is also necessary to prove to insurance the need for cataract surgery. We must prove that your vision cannot be simply improved with a glasses prescription.
As you can see, a refraction is an essential part of an eye exam; however, Medicare and most insurance companies DO NOT cover the charge for a refraction.
WHY IS THE REFRACTION NOT COVERED BY MY MEDICAL INSURANCE?
It is considered a vision-related service versus a medical service. As an ophthalmology clinic we are not equipped to carry an optical shop in order to contract with vision plans.
WILL I BE NOTIFIED IN ADVANCE IF I NEED IT?
Yes, ONLY the doctor or a technician is qualified to tell you if the procedure is necessary. They will let you know if the procedure is necessary BEFORE it is done. You will be given the option to accept or decline this service.
It is important to understand that if you decline, while a diagnostic refraction may be performed to find the source of your vision changes, a glasses prescription will not be released unless you ask for it at your visit.
HOW MUCH IS THE PROCEDURE?
Our office policy is to charge $70.00 for this procedure in addition to the office visit co-pay and/or deductible. Payment is due at the time services are rendered. We do not bill vision insurance plans.
NOTE: This fee is due and payable whether or not you receive a written glasses prescription. Sometimes the change in vision is not significant enough to warrant the cost of purchasing new glasses. However, the fee covers the doctor’s and technician’s time and effort in achieving this process.
Unfortunately we just don't have the space for multiple fit sets
to provide the proper range patients may need.
We have several excellent resources for optometrists who offer contact lens fittings in the community.
Per the Washington State Health Department masks are still required to be worn by all patients and staff regardless of CDC recommendations.
Since we perform exams in close proximity we appreciate all patients wearing their masks appropriately for the entirety of their visit to protect our staff and families.