With the New Year upon us, we find ourselves once again facing the challenge of lost business with fearful patients cancelling appointments to avoid close contact, in both medical and retail environments. Lockdown and restrictions loom large. However, with all of the doom and gloom, it is a new and hope filled year. It is now time to stand together so that we can once again enjoy the freedom of movement to conduct business, socialize, attend trade shows and shop. I look forward to interacting with people and the simple pleasures of entertainment, travel and dining. I will never again take for granted the freedom to walk museum galleries, sit in crowded theaters, restaurants, pubs and sports arenas

As socially responsible citizens, we have one unifying call to action—our 2021 mandate, heal the economy. This is something we can all agree upon, and it is within our power. The crucial first step is eradicate the coronavirus. Of all the bad that came out of 2020, one of the good things is the development of vaccines with 84 to 95 percent efficacy. Once ourselves, our staff and patients are vaccinated, we can open our doors and get back to business as normal without worrying about infecting patients or being infected. The vaccine is a true game-changer. Knowing that we all might be immunized in the first quarter of 2021 makes me hopeful for a robust live Vision Expo East and VM Summit in May. Oh to mingle again!

Imagine removing the barriers between you and the patient, allowing you to safely breathe the same air and touch the same objects/surfaces. Envision businesses reopening and rebuilding, and consumer confidence spurring the recovery of our economy. Picture the economic growth charts sharply spiking as the travel and entertainment industries recover. Remember the simple joy of collaborating face to face with your co-workers. Before the pandemic there was a sharp trend toward virtual socialization but now we learn that this is not nearly enough, we need each other, and we need face-to-face interaction. The coronavirus has forced us to isolate and conduct business and schooling virtually but the lesson learned is that our mental health and our economy needs us to be a community that works, plays and learns together. Happy New Year—2021, the year of recovery.

Deborah Kotob
Pro to Pro Director
[email protected]