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Ohio OD Follows the Family Medical Tradition




Dr. Shimul Shah

Dr. Shimul Shah 
Marysville Family Vision, Marysville, OH

Dr. Shimul Shah’s No. 1 supporter is her dad, a 1970s entrepreneur. Both her parents are physicians and her sister is a dentist with a nearby practice. So, medicine was a natural for her. Shah fell into optometry when she took a year off after graduating from the University of Michigan with a degree in biology. “I was searching for a career path,” she says. “I took a peek at optometry at my mother’s suggestion. It seemed like a good fit.”

In 1999, she graduated from the Pennsylvania College of Optometry and her first job was at a LensCrafters. 

“I liked it for what it was,” she says. “I was a new grad, the systems were already in place, so I did eye exams and didn’t have to think about running a business.” 

She stayed for nine years until the frustration of having no control over what was being prescribed to patients forced her hand. 

Now, owning her own business, she employs three people — two full-time and one part-time — but she is the only optometrist and has the freedom to set her own hours: four days a week and one Saturday a month.

To get psyched for a day at work, I always …

Grab a cup of coffee before trying to work out. I need to take my time to ease into the day.

The most memorable point of my career was …

After practicing part-time at three locations I heard about a practice for sale 30 minutes from home. I went to see it. It was in a small town with a solid patient base. So, I took the plunge and four years ago I bought Marysville Family Vision. I’m officially my own boss, even though the thought of it still surprises me! Along the way, my family has been there to support me and my OD friends in Columbus have been exceptionally helpful.

The type of optical product I enjoy prescribing or selling most is …

Well, my sales technique is not about insurance but about choosing what will work best for my patients. So, selling whatever is best for my patient is my favorite. Now, I put more faith in my own experience and in giving them quality. I see about 10 to 15 patients a day and I’m involved not only in the frame buying, but in the selling to the patient.

My advice for ODs interested in opening their own practice is …

To understand the terms of your agreement ahead of time and don’t assume your patients will follow you from a retail setting to a private one.

My favorite type of patient is …

One who is loyal and actually listens to what I tell them!

This article originally appeared in the March 2017 edition of GO/OD.



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