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Letter of Shame


February 20, 2001

Dear Eye Care Professional:

Bausch & Lomb strongly believes in the importance of regular, professional eye examination to maintain healthy contact tens wear. Since Bausch & Lomb sold its first contact lens, our policy has been to sell only to licensed eye care practitioners, either directly or through out authorized distributors, Over the last decade, the marketplace has undergone tremendous change including how patients purchase their replacement contact lenses. Hundreds of internet sites, including numerous sites supported by eye care practitioners, sell all brands of contact lenses to consumers Despite our clearly stated policy and enforcement attempts, we have not been able to stop our contact lenses from being resold to alternative channels of distribution, nor have other manufacturers.

Bausch & Lomb has been in a lawsuit since 1994, involving unproven allegations that the company conspired with the AOA and other manufacturers to restrict competition by refusing, to sell contact lenses to alternative channels of distribution, including mail order. Today, we are announcing the decision to settle this lawsuit. In so doing, we can redirect our resources toward the development of innovative products and services that help you and your patients.

As part of the settlement, patients will be able to obtain a benefits package valued at $120 which include rebates on our most innovative contact tens products.  To further reinforce the importance of the eye care practitioner in maintaining a healthy contact lens wearing experience, a $25 rebate for the patient's next eye exam is included. In addition, we will be changing our policy to allow the sale of our contact lenses to alternative channels of distribution. For more information about the benefits package, you can log on to www.freecontactlensrebates.com or call 1-888-707-5880.

Bausch & Lomb remains committed to providing you, the eye care professional, with innovative new products and services, as well as advancing vision research..  We have significantly increased our investment in now product research and development, and we have entered into an alliance with Prevent Blindness America to do further research in children's eye health. While more information regarding the alliance will be provided later, we are very excited about the future and our continuing to serve the eye care community.

Sincerely,

 

 


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