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Smart Benefits: Vision Coverage for Google Glass is Clear

Monday, April 21, 2014

 

Google, best known for revolutionizing the search engine, is now changing the way we think about – and use – glasses.

Google Glass allows users to record video, exchange messages, and even get directions, all hands-free. While technology geeks and fashionistas want to be among the first to wear the new interactive glasses, can they don them at work?

Glass at Work

So far, the glasses seem to be adaptable for workplace use, especially in certain industries like insurance, healthcare, manufacturing and engineering, where employees can benefit from the hands-free technology. To ensure the glasses are used in an appropriate manner, Google Glass is only offered to companies who agree to the Global Explorer Program, which allows the employer to choose the users who trial the technology.

Coverage Puts Technology in Sight

Google Glass is pricey, but thanks to a new partnership between Google and VSP Global, the smart accessories may become more accessible through VSPs vision care program, which is offered through employers around the country.

The partnership allows VSP members to receive discounts on Google Glass up to the frame allowance provided within the vision benefit. The subsidized prices average about $225 for the frames and lenses – but the interactive device embedded in the glasses still costs another $1,500.

Training to Avoid Straining

The Google-VSP partnership extends beyond making the glasses affordable, as both companies are working to train eyewear professionals. That’s because it’s important that Google Glass be fitted correctly to avoid eye strain. Users also have to learn how to adjust to the technology that's right in front of them, particularly as they try to balance other tasks.

Google and VSP have a clear vision that Glass will soon be the norm in the workplace, and they're making it easy for employees to enjoy the benefits.

Amy Gallagher has over 21 years of healthcare industry experience guiding employers and employees. As Vice President at Cornerstone Group, she advises large employers on all aspects of healthcare reform, benefit solutions, cost-containment strategies and results-driven wellness programs. Amy speaks regularly on a variety of healthcare-related topics, and is often quoted by national publications on the subject matter. Locally, Amy is a member of SHRM-RI, the Rhode Island Business Group on Health, and the Rhode Island Business Healthcare Advisory Council.

 

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