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Posts Tagged ‘Wal-Mart’

@optotrician: Time for an Eye Exam

David Langford, O.D. on April 26th, 2013 under @ the Optotrician, Optoblog •  Comments Off on @optotrician: Time for an Eye Exam

Don't talk to Willie!

Don’t talk to Willie!

Our Walmart Vision Center has a life-size poster of a tough-looking beared guy from Duck Dynasty. Someone thought it would be fun to put a Walmart name tag with the name “Willie” on it.

It’s strange having Willie in the optical because you see him out of the corner of your eye and you instinctively have to look over at him to see who’s there, but the then you feel stupid because you’ve already told yourself a thousand times before that Willie is just a cardboard picture.

The other day, an optician saw a lady trying to talk to Willie and asking a question. Of course it was only for a few seconds, but it was a couple seconds longer than most people would talk to a cardboard picture.

The VC manager decided to take the name badge of Willie after that. Now most people just come over and have a picture taken with cardboard Willie.

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Walmart and 1800Contacts are Splitsville

David Langford, O.D. on October 31st, 2012 under Optoblog •  Comments Off on Walmart and 1800Contacts are Splitsville

In an e-mail today to Walmart affiliated optometrists from Dr. Chad Overman, director of professional relations, he announced in relationship to Walmart and 1800Contacts that:

“Given future diverging business interests, a decision has been made to end our relationship effective December 31, 2012”

This isn’t 1800Contacts’ first divorce. As I explained before, 1800Contacts shacked up with a regional optical in Utah, Standard Optical, a few years before their civil union with Walmart in 2008.

Dr. Overman continues:

“Even before our alliance with 1-800 Contacts, our patients have counted on us to provide them a broad assortment of contact lenses at affordable prices, and our pledge to them and you is that we will continue to do so. In the event your patients have questions, thank them for their continued trust and patronage and provide them assurance of our continuance of this commitment…
Why are we ending our relationship?
Our customers trust us to provide a broad assortment of products at everyday low prices, and we approach every business decision through this lens.”

The last few years I did enjoy how we typically get contact lens orders to patients in just two days. That’s great customer service, but I’ll bet it’s more cost expense than Walmart is willing to pay in hopes of keeping prices low. I guess we’ll go back to saying “about a week?”

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Undergrad, I Don’t Want to Sugarcoat Optometry

David Langford, O.D. on April 19th, 2011 under Optoblog •  Comments Off on Undergrad, I Don’t Want to Sugarcoat Optometry

Over at Student Doctor Networks – Optometry Forums some undergrad started a thread about me.

Am I real? Yes. Maybe you could have read more than just one of the 340+ posts on my blog? Maybe you could have looked at the side bar and seen the link to my twitter feed and my practice website?

Do I hate optometry? Nope. I like it fine. Sure, I’d rather be a rock star, but that will have to wait for now.

Did I make a whole bunch of inflammatory blog posts? Yes. But I can’t please everybody. I like Walmart optometry more than private practice for numerous reasons, but not the least of which is I feel like less of a salesman and more like the doctor I was trained to be. I think you can get that in other settings too, but I don’t want to work for the government anymore. I’m not academic enough to be a professor, and I don’t want to be an OMD’s “super-tech.”

In private practice, everyone else got paid…except me. The frame reps, the contact lens distributors, and labs, the staff, the landlord, , the bank, the equipment vendors…they all get their money up front or first thing. You, the doctor, get paid last…if at all. Risky.

if you like taking risks, then why not take a better bet in a different profession selling or manufacturing widgets with less restriction on maximum possible income?

Undergrad, if you really want to be a private practice optometrist, go ahead. I won’t stop you. I would ask you why you would gamble so much when you could practice in a setting with MUCH less risk. It does work out well for lots of O.D.’s, but that doesn’t mean it will work well for you.

By the way, I don’t think pointing these things out should be labeled “negative.” It’s reality. There are pluses and minuses to every profession. Undergrad, I don’t want to sugarcoat your potential career choice. I once thought I was going to be an architect because I wanted to design houses. I actually talked with an architect and found out very few architects design houses because most people buy their plan from a catalog. Most architects design banks and rest-stop bathrooms and other utilitarian buildings. That’s not what I would be happy with, so I switched majors. I’m thankful that architect shot straight. If you don’t believe me, then I hope you talk with an optometrist that you can trust who will also shoot straight.

Now, knowing more of the risks and potential negatives, if you still want to be an optometrist, then at least you’re not going into this blind. You won’t be able to say, “Why didn’t anyone tell me it would be this way?”

Anyway, I’ve spoken enough about this subject. I need to get back to writing/selling the next great screenplay so I can have a retirement.

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CibaVision is Discontinuing O2Optix

David Langford, O.D. on February 22nd, 2011 under Optoblog •  Comments Off on CibaVision is Discontinuing O2Optix

I just got word that Ciba will discontinue O2Optix soft contact lenses. The time line appears to be:

  • 7-1-2011 Doctors will no longer get trials for O2Optix
  • 1-1-2011 Product availability not guaranteed
  • 7-1-2012 O2Optix lens discontinued.

Ciba has been pushing strongly the one month replacement modality which flies in the face of the two week replacement schedule philosophy of their competitor, Vistakon. Ciba’s recommended alternative for those who have been in O2Optix lenses is to have their doctor refit them in Air Optix Aqua.

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Corporate Walmart Thinks it’s September 10, 2001

David Langford, O.D. on February 10th, 2011 under Asides, Optoblog •  2 Comments

A shoplifter pulls a gun on four Walmart employees in a small room. The four employees heroically bring him to the ground. Walmart fires all four a week later because as the full story at KSL.com explains:

AP09 is Walmart’s policy on dealing with shoplifters. A copy obtained by KSL shows employees are allowed to use “reasonable force” to limit movements of struggling suspects. If a weapon comes out, however, associates must “disengage” and “withdraw,” the policy states.

Imagine you have a Walmart employee who cares more about rules than their own life. In that exact moment, they hesitate because rule AP09 springs into their head. Their hesitation could cost them their life. I applaud these three men and one women. They acted reasonably and rationally. We should throw a parade in their honor.

The pansy lawyers in corporate who wrote AP09 should revise their documentation to say, “However, in a post 9/11 world, if you believe your life is in danger, you should fight like Joshua on the 7th day at Jericho so that your inaction won’t cost you your life and potentially others lives also.”

Agreed, no one thinks a pair of socks or a computer is worth anyone’s life trying to defend it. Criminals don’t care about your life. They kill kids to steal their Nike Air Jordan shoes! They kill to try to stay out of jail. You won’t know if they actually shoot or not until after the fact, but guess what! The very fact they pulled out a deadly weapon means that they are willing to use it! This isn’t about socks or computers anymore. We have to assume that if they pull a gun they are going to shoot! They are willing to…kill…you!

Walmart shouldn’t expect people to play dice with their own life. Those Fabulous Four didn’t allow chance or the crazed mind of a felon to determine whether they went home to their family that day.

Before September 11, 2001 popular belief was that if you give into the demands of evil people, then you would be okay. Apparently corporate Walmart never got the memo that the rest of us received on 9/12.

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Walmart not selling Clear Care now

David Langford, O.D. on January 25th, 2011 under Optoblog •  4 Comments

UPDATE 2-26-2011: Ciba and Walmart came to an agreement, and ClearCare will soon be available at your nearest Walmart very soon if it’s not there already.

Walmart will sell out their existing stock of ClearCare, but won’t be reordering more. Here’s from the memo dated 1-24-2011:

  • Jan 1, 2001 Ciba Vision has incorporated a substantial cost increase to their Clear Care items throughout the industry.
  • We take any and all cost increases very seriously especially if the supplier is unable to justify the significant increase completely.
  • In the interest of our customers, we will not carry Clear Care until this matter is resolved.

They go on to suggest that the V.C. associates can ask the Doctor Partners to recommend a suitable alternative product.

Isn’t this what happened to Rubbermaid?

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Percentages of Types of Exams from a Walmart Practice

David Langford, O.D. on September 18th, 2010 under Optoblog •  2 Comments

For you optometry students trying to make up numbers for your business plan, here are some percentages from my average Walmart practice:

Eye Exam Types

Types of eye exams, by percentage, done by optoblog at his Walmart practice for 2007-YTD2010 (9-17-2010). Also, percentage of all exams needing insurance billing.
YTD 201046%47%7%26%

In 2007 and 2008 I didn’t track the percentage of patients using insurance because I didn’t have to bill very much back then.

For more interesting stats to help you make your business plan, the OBA-CE has compiled these:

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I’m Going to Bentonville!

David Langford, O.D. on February 27th, 2010 under Optoblog •  6 Comments


Nice logo, Walmart!

I got a very special e-mail today (see below for full text). After a huge campaign which cost taxpayers…well, nothing, I’m one of the few optometrists who have been selected to attend the Walmart annual Health and Wellness Conference for 2010.

I intend to blog about my experience daily. As one of the few selected, I imagine there will be an occasion for me to express concerns and ask questions. If you have any comments or questions you would like me to consider voicing in Bentonville, then please write it in the comment section below. (Please be serious and civil.)

Here’s that e-mail:

Dear David Langford

Historically, the annual Doctor meeting was primarily focused around Optometry. As our health and wellness businesses continue to become more integrated, we seek to further expose the important work of health care professionals to the greater Walmart organization. We also want our senior leadership to better understand the difference you are making every day in the lives of our patients. With that in mind, we will be hosting the Health & Wellness Conference May 3-5th, 2010 in Bentonville Arkansas.

You have been chosen through a nomination process to take part in this exclusive gathering of professionals; you’ll hear from the executive leadership of Walmart on our company’s ongoing growth strategy; discussion from governmental and NGO’s on health care reform in America as well as inspirational messages from medical visionaries on the impact they are making within their communities.

We have made several changes of this conference design from years past. For example a smaller more intimate gathering will facilitate the opportunity for you to interact with and learn from key leaders as well as your peers. Representatives from all of the Walmart Health & Wellness business units will take part including professionals from the practices of Optometry and Pharmacy as well as our Clinic Operator partners in addition to select representatives of our internal support teams.

In addition we elected to conserve time and resources in an effort to present a holistic message around health care and the challenges that our customer, health care professionals and company is facing today, therefore CE credits will not be offered at this meeting. And as this meeting has been limited to a select group of attendees, we are asking that spouses not attend.

We look forward to having you take part in the Health & Wellness Conference 2010. Please click the View Event Summary link below, view the event details, and respond by clicking either the Yes or No button at the bottom of the invitation. Or you can simply select the register button on the Event Summary website. Registration will close on March 13th, 2010

Thank you,
Health & Wellness Professional Affairs

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Nominate Me for Health & Wellness Conference 2010

David Langford, O.D. on January 10th, 2010 under Optoblog •  1 Comment

I would just like to ask every Walmart optometrist reading this blog to please nominate me to go to the Health & Wellness Conference May 3-5th, 2010 in Bentonville Arkansas. I want to be one of the 250 optometrists in attendance.

To nominate me, find the e-mail that was sent to you from Walmartod.com on 1-8-2010 and click on the link. Here is the information you will need:

David Langford
Store # 1888
North Logan, UT

Why should you nominate me?

  • Because I guess you can’t nominate yourself.
  • I’m a cub scout Wolf den leader. I go to church every Sunday
  • The associates in my vision center like me- we’re even friends on Facebook.
  • I’m all techie. I even have a Humphrey Matrix VF and HRT2 in my office.
  • I recently raised my fees and no longer charge extra for dilation.
  • I was featured in the Review of Optometry with an article highlighting Walmart optometry.
  • I’m like one of the original optometry bloggers. ‘Nuff said. I’ll blog the whole thing so it’s just like you being there (except without having to lose money while not doing exams at your office.)

There you have it. All the reasons you need.

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Interesting Wal-Mart OD Stats

David Langford, O.D. on July 2nd, 2009 under Optoblog •  4 Comments

The Optometric Business Academy (OBA) came out with some statistics regarding Walmart O.D.’s revenue growth in 2008.

Walmart practices grew 10% during 2008, on average, as Sam’s Club practices grew 6%.

Growth also varied depending on years at location.

I’ll be interested to see what 2009 stats will say. Anecdotally, my business was up 8% in 2008 while so far for 2009 I currently forecast it to be down over 8% (so back to 2007 levels). So when you think about it, 2009 could see me be down 16-18% from where I wanted to be.

Thanks Obama. That was such a great idea to spend our way out of a recession and have the government take over several private sector industries. Idiot.

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