The Lasik Vision Institute, a national chain of refractive surgical centers, advertises that they offer Lasik for only $199 per eye. Once you have your "FREE" consultation the spin begins.
They then give you your "REAL" price of anywhere from $999 per eye all the way up to $1699 per eye. Once the patient is duped into accepting a higher price, that with proper negotiating techniques can truly be anywhere from $199 to $499 per eye no matter of your prescription, you are forced to leave a deposit of $100-$300 to "lock in" your special exception price.
They claim that prices change without notice so to influence you to leave your deposit; however, prices have not changed in several years. Only sales techniques for getting a higher amount per eye and more devious advertising have changed.
Once the salary plus commission salesperson collects your deposit you are allowed to see a doctor to know if you are even a candidate. If you are not a candidate you are able to get a $200 deposit paid by check in roughly 4-8 weeks. This must be so that the company can collect interest on the money until then. Even if you paid cash, you are to wait the same time frame for a refund.
If you are a candidate you schedule your surgery. This happens even before the SURGEON has reviewed your chart. You take the day off of work and arrange for someone to go to surgery with you only for the potential of having the surgeon not want to do the surgery. This only happens AFTER you have paid them in FULL. If you are now a non-candidate, you will have to wait for 4-8 weeks for your refund. THIS IS CRAZY!!!
When you go to the window to pay your balance, an employee that is hourly PLUS bonus is there to sell you plugs. Many people only learn of plugs for the first time here. They speak of how the doctors HIGHLY recommend inserting these things, and Oh By The Way cost anywhere from $100-$200 per item. The funny thing is, if you "NEGOTIATE" once again, you can get them for as low as $35-$50 per item. This is pure profit for the company since they only cost pennies per item.
If you are a non-candiate with The Lasik Vision Institute, you are forced to pay $100 for the office visit. This is so that they can pay the independant doctor his fee for the eye test to determine candidacy. FUNNY THING IS... THE DOCTORS ARE PAID PER DAY !NOT! PER PATIENT!!! This is an obvious lie to withhold the $100 for the eye test that can only be used to buy prescription glasses NOT contacts.
If you are planning on having LASIK, my experience as a patient having the surgery was great. They have wonderful doctors, BUT company practices are awful. You are going to wait for 4-7 hours the day of surgery before you even get ready for Lasik.
If you are going to have Lasik with them, PLEASE go in educated. DO NOT PAY OVER $499 PER EYE WITH A LIFETIME ASSURANCE PLAN REGARDLESS OF PRESCRIPTION. The enhancement packages cost the company nothing; however, they charge several hundred dollars more for them.
Additionally, DO NOT PAY anymore than $40 for long lasting plugs. Remember, it only cost them pennies to purchase them.
If you already had refractive surgery with them and like to complain and recoup the overpayment of services that you paid, do not call the Better Business Bureau. You will get nowhere. Instead call the Regional Manager, Pam Jackson at 561-436-####. She also works out of all of the local sites every so often, but is generally at their Milwaukee, WI location at 262-860-####.
If you cannot get a hold of Pam Jackson,(she sometimes screens calls) leave a message or complain to the local manager as much as you can. You can also call the corporate headquarters at 1-800-584-####. You can complain to the President Marc' Andrea Musa, but most likely get redirected to the customer service department and that is a BIG dead end. Try calling the president at 340-998-#### if he won't accept your calls at the corporate office. It is working for me.
PAY NO MORE THAN $998 TOTAL FOR THE SURGERY ($499 PER EYE MAXIMUM) WITH LIFETIME ENHANCEMENTS. JUST NEGOTIATE. WALK OUT IF NECESSARY. YOUR FILE WILL GO TO THEIR CORPORATE HEADQUARTERS AND YOU WILL BE CALLED BY A TELEMARKETER THAT WILL GIVE YOU THE SURGERY AT ANY PRICE!!! ONLY PAY $4O PER PLUG NO MORE. MAKE SURE YOU GET THE LONG LASTING PLUGS! AT THE BEGINNING, SAY YOU WILL NOT LEAVE A DEPOSIT UNTIL THE DOCTOR DETERMINES IF YOU CAN HAVE THE SURGERY. THEN YOU WONT HAVE TO WAIT 8 WEEKS FOR A REFUND.
If you do what is outlined above, you will have an enjoyable Lasik experience. You have to approach this company as if you were going to buy a used car. It is unfortunate but true. Do not let the commissioned managers and sales people win the battle you can have lasik for as little as $400 if you work it right. Don't let them rip-off another trusting patient. It isn't right.
Additionally, if you are traveling from outside the area to have surgery with these people, BE AWARE, you may not be eligible for surgery. They still have to do MAJOR tests at the clinic. If the doctor does not like what he sees, he will NOT do surgery. You will have to wait a long time for your money. This is planned by the management so that they can keep your money longer. Get the OrbScan BEFORE you pay!!!
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