COVID-19 Implications

COVID-19 Implications


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is closely monitoring an outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a novel (new) coronavirus first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. Additional cases have been identified in a growing number of other international locations, including the United States. Monitoring, reporting and guidance is provided regularly by the CDC.

Shipping & Manufacturing

Members of The Vision Council should expect delays in shipping & production and should contact their manufacturers, suppliers & freight forwarders to determine the potential impact of COVID-19 on their individual businesses. Bloomberg Business's supply chain newsletter reports that demand for ocean freight continues at a normal pace, but this could change when China reopens for business. Air freight rates, however, are rising as demand for getting goods to the US quickly has increased while capacity has been reduced by the grounding of passenger jets. Likewise, demand for trucking services is surging, as the need for products from stockpiling consumers grows, a trend which Bloomberg Business believes will not last long.

Travel Restrictions

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regularly issues updates regarding international & domestic travel. The latest recommendations can be found here.

Optical Retail & Eyecare Providers

In a statement updated on March 18, the American Optometric Association (AOA) provided guidance to doctors of optometry based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations for essential healthcare. In the current patient care environment, doctors and their essential professional staff have a responsibility to ensure that all fully appropriate care preparation guidelines and requirements are strictly observed. For more information, view the CDC Guidance for healthcare facilities.

Industry Events

Due to reports from public health officials and in line with national and regional authorities and WHO guidelines related to the COVID-19 virus, Vision Expo East, due to be held March 26-29, will now be consolidated with Vision Expo West in Las Vegas, September 23-26. Read more here.

Optical Market Research

The Vision Council market research team is continuing to track the evolving eyewear and eyecare behavior of American consumers as well as members and eye care providers in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The most recent reports can be found here.

Essential Business Operations

The federal government has issued guidelines specifying what is classified as an essential and non-essential business; however, the decision regarding which businesses can remain open and which must be closed during a time of crisis is ultimately made by each state government. Review the state-by-state list here.

U.S. Legislative Response to COVID-19

U.S. lawmakers have worked to provide emergency relief for individuals, families and businesses. The Vision Council has created a general analysis outlining the U.S. legislative response to COVID-19. (updated March 25, 2020)



The information in The Vision Council's COVID -19 Implications update is derived from selected government and public sources. The Vision Council believes that the information comes from reliable sources, but does not guarantee its accuracy or completeness, which may be subject to change without notice.