Practices are already facing significant challenges from optical chains and online retailers. Low reimbursements from managed care, along with requirements to sell specific products and use specified labs, can be the final straw for some practices.
SAN FRANCISCO—There are possibly thousands of technology startups that emerge in the health care marketplace every year, and just about everyone is looking to hit upon an idea that breaks new ground for its user base. Patch, a San Francisco-based startup, counts itself among the new businesses that believes it has hit upon a unique approach to solving a longstanding health care problem. Patch, on its website, calls itself “the first universal platform for vision care that manages patient eligibility and claim filing for out-of-network vision plans in one simple application.” “We found that right now the method for being able to figure out what people’s benefits are and help them to understand them—and the difference between in and out of network and filing for reimbursements at the point-of-sale—is a really complex process,” said Patch co-founder and chief executive officer Brett Plotzker. “It’s sort of unnecessarily complex and we wanted to make it simpler.”