Para/Optician/Staff Course Schedule & Registration

Illinois 2023 Annual Meeting 

Speaker: Joy Gibb, ABOC

Joy L. Gibb, ABOC began her optical career in 1986.  She managed an independent retail opticianry in Bountiful, Utah for over ten years before opening her own business, Eyes of Joy Mobile Optical Service and is currently the practice manager for Daynes Eye and Lasik in Bountiful, Utah. In addition, she often consults practices about their dispensaries and improving customer service and sales.  Patients often seek her help with the difficult to fit prescription, progressive lenses, and children’s eyewear.

Joy has participated in the writing of several industry guides and publications and has also served as a member of the Better Vision Institute.

Speaker: Sharon Carter 

Sharon Carter has over 30 years of optometric experience including working in an office as an office manager, sales and training for an optometric software company to consulting for private practices.  She started her own consulting company, Eye Care Optometric Consulting (ECOC), in 2001 and personally consults in offices all over the country spreading her team building philosophy. She is very energetic and enthusiastic and for more than 15 years has been speaking and motivating staff at state associational meetings, national and international conferences sharing her company’s philosophy of “provide the best patient care possible and the money will follow.”

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Friday, September 29, 2023

1:30pm - 2:30pm

Common Eye Disorders (1 hour AOA-CPC & ABO/NCLE)
Instructor: Joy Gibb

This course will explore some of the most common eye disorders and diseases seen in patients.  Understanding how these conditions can affect vision will help every staff member become better in helping patients and offering education and solutions.  

2:30pm – 3:30pm

Telephone Triage 101 (1 hour AOA-CPC & ABO) 
Instructor: Joy Gibb

Effectively triaging calls can lead to excellent patient care and satisfaction, as well as keeping schedules efficient and profitable.  This course will explore characteristics of excellent triage behavior as well as questions to ask will lead to an understanding of the needs and concerns of the patient.  Common ocular conditions will also be discussed.

3:30pm - 4:30pm

Kid Care: Successfully Dispensing Children's Eyewear (1 hour AOA-CPC & ABO)
Instructor: Joy Gibb

Fitting children with eyewear can be one of the most rewarding yet most challenging opportunities in dispensing. Working with children and their parents takes great communication and listening skills, special fitting techniques, and patience. This course will offer tips and suggestions to eyecare professionals that will help them with fitting children's eyewear and communicating the benefits of specific features and expenditures to parents.

4:30pm – 6:30pm

Exhibit Hall with drinks & appetizers
Jimmy Buffett themed with drinks brought to you by VSP Vision


Saturday, September 30, 2023

8:00am - 10:00am 

Developing Your Best Comprehensive Eyecare Practice (2 hour AOA-CPC & ABO)
Instructor: Joy Gibb

Have you ever wanted to find out what your colleagues are saying and doing to create successful practices? Do you wonder if you share common concerns about customer service and loyalty as well as hoping your team members are performing to your expectations and their best ability? This course will explore the results of a national survey of eyecare professionals and give you the opportunity with your entire staff to discuss ways you can become an admired practice that offers the best comprehensive eyecare possible. Time will be given to allow teams to discuss everything from team morale, patient scheduling and experience, and ways to implement new strategies within the office and as a team.

10:00am - 11:00am

Conflicts – Avoiding Them, Resolving Them (1 hour AOA-CPC & ABO)
Instructor: Joy Gibb

Most people don’t like conflict and will usually avoid it at all costs.  But when dealing with the public chances are pretty good there are going to be conflicts.  This course will explain techniques to avoid conflicts and explore ways to diffuse conflicts once they’ve occurred. 

11:00am – 1:00pm

Exhibit Hall & Lunch

1:00pm - 2:00pm

Front Office Procedures / Memorable First and Last Impressions (1 hour AOA-CPC & ABO)
Instructor: Sharon Carter

How important is the first impression and the last impression patients get when visiting your office? Learn how to make a positive impression beginning with scheduling the appointment, through the duration of your patients’ visit until the patient walks out of the door. Topics covered will include telephone procedures, greeting patients, appointment scheduling, checking out and collecting charges, pre-appointing along with any other interactions with the patient that might occur in the front office.  

2:00pm - 3:00pm

Communicating with Patients (1 hour AOA-CPC & ABO/NCLE)
Instructor: Sharon Carter

Communicating with our patients should be the most important thing we do each day. How we communicate and understand their needs, will determine if they will become an established patient with your practice or if they will choose to go elsewhere. Learn the various ways we communicate, i.e. verbal, facial expressions, and body language and how to use each one of these in a positive way when communicating with your patients.  

3:00pm - 4:00pm

Creating a Killer Optical (1 hour AOA-CPC & ABO/NCLE)
Instructor: Sharon Carter

The optical is one of the most important areas in your office. This is where 60%-70% of your income should be generated in your practice. If you are not generating these percentages and would like to be or you are generating these percentages and would like to take your optical to the next level this course gives you an overview on how to accomplish your goals.  

5:00pm - 10:30pm

Illinois Optometry's Celebration feat. Eye Docs of Rock
Ticketed event
Free ticket included with all full weekend registrations
Additional tickets may be purchased here.

Sunday, October 1, 2023

9:00am - 11:00am

Coding & Billing (2 hours AOA-CPC & ABO)
Instructor: Sharon Carter

In today’s optometric practice, insurance is a major source of the practice’s income including both government and private company coverages. Each year it seems that participating provider payments are reduced or stringent stipulations are implemented that require certain components be included in the exam in order to be able to code and bill for the services provided. Companies, whose sole function is to audit and recoup monies paid to participating providers, have struck fear in the hearts of more than one optometric practice when they receive the letter or call that they are to undergo an audit. Coding and billing is like completing your tax return. You are entitled to every deduction you are qualified for (billing appropriately for every penny for services provided), but do not cheat the tax man (do not over code nor short change yourself by under coding). You will learn in this course the detailed criteria for choosing the proper code and how to build the proper code so that you can receive the payment to which you are entitled while ensuring compliancy and being audit proof. It is one thing to work for “free” but, to work, get paid, spend the money, and then have to give it back makes for a bad day!  

11:00am - 12:00pm

Six Ways to be a Team that Rocks (1 hour AOA-CPC & ABO/NCLE)
Instructor: Sharon Carter

This fast-paced, energetic program is designed to teach six concrete actions that will build a more successful optometric team. Staff motivation on the part of staff and management is an ongoing challenge and this will give you ideas whether you are a manager, a doctor or staff on how to build the team that “Rocks.” This course covers the hiring process of new staff, creating a culture that will attract and retain good staff, and what older staff need to do to continue to grow and be a team player even as the team changes.

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