New Law Places Additional Restrictions on Sale of Contact Lenses in IL

Aug 9, 2013

Illinois has a new law regarding the sale of contact lenses.

The state has always required a prescription, but the new law says that contact lenses can be dispensed only by, or under the supervision of, a medical doctor, pharmacist or optometrist. Dr. Donald Gordon is the optometric coordinator for the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.  He says the issue at hand was the sale of cosmetic contact lenses by convenience stores and gas stations:  "One of the common complaints that people would have that were caught with the enforcement of the act previously was people would say, they owned a gas station or whatever and they said, I went to a meeting and I was told by sales people that it was legal for me to sell contact lenses."
It wasn't unless the buyer had a prescription, and now it isn't unless the retailer is operating under the auspices of a doctor, optometrist or pharmacist, and Gordon says the new law should make that clear.
He says legitimate retailers may also be re-assessing their contact lens displays, putting them behind the counter and so on.