This is a realization of a long-term project that must be born earlier this week. The association Optics solidarity launches on Monday the "pass glasses." A device that should allow seniors whose financial resources are too thin to allow them to purchase a mutual good, to provide appropriate spectacles from their view. 8,000 to 10,000 people, aid recipients in the complementary health throughout France, and should soon receive a voucher to enjoy a fitness trail at cost, including consultation with the ophthalmologist, and the purchase glasses with progressive lenses from an optician.
No low cost
"We are working on this project for three years," says Xavier Subirana, ophthalmologist and president of the Optical solidarity. He says the idea inspired by the HEC Chair "Social Businee / Enterprise and Poverty" as co-chairs Martin Hirsch has mobilized the entire industry. "Danone is one of the pioneers of social business, but in this case we thought it was much more efficient to use the entire industry as a business." To date, 13 additional health (including AG2R La Mondiale, April, Groupama …), 500 opticians, Essilor as industrial and ophthalmologists have concentrated their power to facilitate the implementation of the concept. "It's not a charity that requires a donation. Here people pay for their glasses, "says Nicolas Lambert, owner of Essilor France. Ultimately, the patient should spend at most a few dollars instead of 300 euros today. "This is an innovative business model where one neither gains nor loses money. And this is not the low cost, says Xavier Subirana, people buy the raw material and technology. Everything else is covered by the efforts of the margins at various levels by the industry. The doctor's visit is to be discounted fully refundable. " For now, Nicolas Lambert admits even Essilor making losses. To produce the lenses, and assemble the eleven models of glasses offered by the pass, the company is including operated its plant in Toulouse outside normal production hours.
140,000 persons concerned
But to make the project a success, we must know the device. Tested later this year in Marseille, the "eye pass" has proven its usefulness but also revealed the difficulty of reaching the target. "We know that some seniors throw good because they think it is an advertisement," lamented Xavier Subirana. As such, the role of complementary health is important because it is they who must identify people who can benefit. "The more mutual partners in the project will increase the more we can touch people," says association president. Discussions are also underway with new complementary. The first patients in the Paris region should get their equipment in early June. It will be a little longer for the province because of the smaller number of ophthalmologists. Then a second phase will be launched by the end of the year. Eventually 140,000 people should benefit from "pass glasses." In addition, the partners hope that their initiative will give ideas to other sectors.