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Community Highlights: Meet Caitlin Morrison, OD, FAAO, FSLS of In Focus: Specialty Contact Lens & Vision Solutions

Today we’d like to introduce you to Caitlin Morrison, OD, FAAO, FSLS.

Hi Caitlin, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
I opened my specialty optometry practice, In Focus: Specialty Contact Lens & Vision Solutions, to provide options to people who were specifically struggling to find contact lenses that fit well and provided good comfort with stable, clear vision. I became interested in this sub-specialty of eye care because I had an eye condition in middle school. My Doctor told me it would prohibit me from ever wearing contact lenses successfully. I tried to stay positive, but it affected my self-esteem, especially when glasses weren’t as cool as they are now. Besides the fact that I developed extreme dry eye, I could not wear contact lenses for most of middle, high, and graduate school. I believe there is always another option, so I did my research during this time and tried every type of contact lens available (soft, rigid, ones that you wear overnight and take out during the day, etc.), yet nothing was successful.

Finally, after graduating from optometry school in Boston, I moved to New York City to complete my Cornea & Contact Lens Residency program. During this time, innovations in specialty contact lenses emerged (namely, the scleral lens with more customized designs), and I can now wear contact lenses comfortably all day with great vision. I wanted to be the Doctor I wished I had had during those 15 years. The truth is that 99% of the population can successfully wear contact lenses and even improve their vision significantly with the proper treatment. This includes those with serious eye conditions, severe dry eye, and those who have had multiple eye surgeries. I moved back to Arizona from Manhattan in 2019 and opened my practice in 2020. It has been an incredible experience, and I have been blessed to have a great network of physicians and surgeons who trust me with their patients. Using contact lenses to enable someone who hasn’t seen clearly for the last 20 years to see 20/20 again is amazing.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Opening and running a business is never a perfectly smooth process, so I try to be flexible and keep a clear list of prioroties to guide our team when there are many things to do at onceFirst and foremost, I prioritize my patients. Because of my specialty, my patients need a very high level of care, so we aim to give extra attention to their questions in the office and address patient emails, texts, and phone calls quickly to take care of anything that arises.

After that, we prioritize responding to new patient inquiries and making sure to update any of our referring Doctors with the status of their patients. I want my patients to feel very well taken care of and keeping their healthcare team updated of treatment and progress is a big part of that.
The main struggles of running this business have been to stay very organized and on top of a high volume of contact lens orders and manufacturing processes, especially as we have a larger patient base every year. We continually examine and revise our operations to stay as efficient and communicative as possible.

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know?
One thing I love about my practice is that I’ve set it up so I can really get to know my patients. The first visit with me can last more than an hour, which is very unusual for any doctor, and that provides a solid foundation for the patient-doctor relationship. Usually, my patients have seen many doctors for their vision concerns before they get to me. Taking extra time to get the full picture of their issues and explain all treatment options thoroughly makes them feel comfortable. I enjoy this kind of patient-first approach.

The main thing to know about In Focus is that we design the best specialty contact lenses with the highest quality technology and industry knowledge! We design for the “difficult to fit” or previously-told “impossible to fit” patients. We design lenses to improve vision for people who have conditions such as keratoconus, corneal transplants, radial keratotomy (RK), post-LASIK surgery, corneal scarring, and much more.
We also specialize in a certain type of contact lens called a scleral lens. This is an amazing high-tech option for people whose “eyes are too dry for contact lenses,” a common complaint in Arizona! This lens corrects your prescription AND is a treatment for dry eye. We can correct double vision with contact lenses, our office’s national and international specialties. We have inquiries from patients all over the world almost daily about this. We design custom soft contact lenses for those who have tried every brand and never found the vision stable or clear. We also design prosthetic contact lenses for those with ocular disfigurement to cover any visible irregularities on their corneas.

What has been the most important lesson you’ve learned along your journey?
The most important lesson I have learned is to pick a few things to do every day and complete those things. It is effortless to become overwhelmed with running a business, taking care of my patients, and spending quality time with my husband and children. Focusing on just a few things keeps me grounded and able to move the needle forward. For a recovering perfectionist, this mindset is still a work in progress!

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Image Credits:

Images courtesy of In Focus: Specialty Contact Lens & Vision Solutions.

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