CTNJ/Opinion:  Rent seeking in the Capitol – Paranoia about the optometry app

Terry Cowgill

Terry Cowgill lives in Lakeville, blogs at ctdevilsadvocate.com and is managing editor of The Berkshire Edge in Great Barrington, Mass.

Smack in the middle of a towering state budget crisis, and as the General Assembly goes into special session to deal with it, it might seem very small of a Connecticut political columnist to devote time and space to a segment of the business community that’s afraid of competition, but here goes anyway.

In a little noticed act of protectionism, the General Assembly quietly passed a bill — an Act Concerning Consumer Protection in Eye Care — whose purpose is “To protect consumers from dubious technology that can compromise well-accepted standards of care and place a patient’s health at risk.”

Who could possibly object to that? After all, isn’t protecting us from fraud and evil-doing one of the government’s major responsibilities? But this isn’t fraud at all. It’s a new technology that, in some cases, would eliminate the middle-man and allow consumers to test their vision, online or with a mobile phone app, and order new contact lenses without an expensive office visit to an optometrist.

Read the full story on CT News Junkie.


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