Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Contempt of court finding against co-called "eyeglass dispensary"

One of the stupidest things the current Ontario Liberal Government did was end funding for eye examinations. Fortunately, I still don't have to pay for my biennial exams as I have a standing referral from my general practitioner. But having to pay sixty bucks a pop for an exam has led some people to leave their eyes unchecked for potentially harmful conditions like glaucoma and cataracts -- the latter of which my father had surgery for a couple of years ago.

The law in Ontario stipulates eyeglasses or contact lenses must be dispensed by an optician, after getting a prescription from a physician, optometrist or opthamologist. That ensures a patient gets the right Rx for his or her current condition. Tell that to Bruce Bergez of the Great Glasses chain. He's the only licensed optician in his chain of 17 stores, and has been claiming for the last few years that he can do eye exams using a computer analysis method not recognized anywhere. The College of Optometrists and the College of Opticians both cried foul, and got a restraining order. Bergez refused to comply. So yesterday, Judge David Crane said enough and fined Bergez $1 million, the largest contempt of court fine in Canadian history -- plus $50,000 a day each day he does not get into compliance herein. If he doesn't, he and his wife Joanne who co-owns the chain are going to prison. (PDF of the decision is here.)

In addition, the other day the College of Opticians suspended Bergez' licence and pending a further investigation he may be ordered out of the business all together.

Bergez has said he's going to appeal. Good luck with that, pal.

Frankly, I can't afford laser surgery. And I don't like the idea of contacts, so I'm stuck with my high-index glasses for now. But I've always gone to a reputable chain store, for regardless of the cost I want to make sure it's done right and my spectacles made for me -- as do most people for theirs. I'd rather pay a high price for one pair of quality corrective lenses than peanuts for three pairs that are crap. Bergez should either get with the program or get out of the business. We don't need people playing with other people's emotions claiming they "don't need an eye exam" or they can get one for free.

For his part, Dalton McGuinty should just bite the bullet and start paying for eye exams again. They are medically necessary procedures after all -- and if he had done so all this time we would never have had sleaze like Bergez to put up with. True, he was playing fast and hard by the rules before McGuinty when the restraining order first took effect, but Pointy Head made it worse.

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(no name)04/12/2006 9:48:32 PM
This cat was doing free exams before deinsurance. He still advertises free exams on his website. He's a lunatic. He takes his inspiration from a film called Boiler Room. He actually makes it mandatory that his staff sits through this film to better understand his motivation.

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