California regulations require signage to inform patients of their right to get an automatic copy of their eyewear prescriptions, yet the requirement seems to be largely ignored by optometrists, according to a recent spot check of offices in San Francisco, Santa Clara and San Jose, CA, by consumer education and advocacy organization Consumer Action.
A full 90 percent of 20 optometrists’ offices our staff visited in mid-March (March 8-15) did not have the required signs. While Consumer Action will not publish the names and addresses of the shops, we have documented our visits and will make our findings available to regulators.
If you get a fitting for glasses or contact lenses anywhere in the United States, the federal Contact Lens Rule and the Eyeglass Rule require eye doctors to give you a copy of your prescription at the end of your eye exam or contact lens fitting—whether you ask for it or not. The doctor can’t require you to pay an extra fee for the prescription, sign a waiver or buy eyeglasses or contact lenses on site.