Sun’s out, shades on

August 19, 2020 -

With 3.5 million cases of skin cancer diagnosed each year in the U.S., many Americans have become more aware of the impacts of spending too much time in the sun. Though more than 94 million miles away, that yellow ball in the sky can be dangerous; the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can damage skin in as little as 15 minutes.

It is equally important to protect eyes against damage from the sun. Our latest ENLIVEN campaign focuses on the importance of eye care and Enable’s vision plan benefit to aid in prevention of sun related eye damage.

“Your trip to the lake or pool likely starts by putting on sunscreen, but it’s just as important to protect your eyes from the dangers of sun exposure,” said John Humphries, director, Benefits & Payroll. “Throwing on your favorite pair of sunglasses is an easy way to ensure your eyes are protected from harmful rays, while simultaneously reducing your risk of developing cataracts.”

A good pair of sunglasses can cost upwards of $100, but employees and dependents enrolled in Enable’s Visioncare plan through VSP are eligible for a sunglass benefit that won’t break the bank. This benefit gives members the option to purchase a pair of non-prescription sunglasses in lieu of prescription glasses or contacts from a VSP provider, using their plan frame allowance.

How it works

  • Visit an in-network VSP provider. You can find a list of providers and available discounts on the VSP website.
  • Consider taking advantage of VSP’s $10 yearly eye exam, which is included in your coverage.
  • Select a pair of sunglasses.
  • At check-out, tell the cashier you have sun care through VSP to receive $160 toward the purchase.

“This is a great benefit for those who have vision coverage but do not need prescription glasses or contacts, as it allows you to get something in return for the premiums you pay each month,” added Humphries. “Please note, if you do use the sunglass benefit, you will exhaust your frame allowance, which renews every 24 months. Additionally, a $25 copay will apply to the purchase of the sunglasses. No member ID is required, but you can obtain one by logging in or registering at”

In addition to wearing sunglasses, here are some easy ways to practice sun safety.

  • Lather up - Make sure your sunscreen has an SPF of at least 30 and reapply generously every two hours. It’s important to know that sunscreen is not waterproof, nor does it completely block UV radiation, so consider other protections if you are in the sun for long periods of time.
  • Shade is your friend - Reduce your risk of skin damage by seeking out shade, and limit exposure to the sun when UV rays are the strongest, which is between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  • Cover up - Don’t pack away your pants and long-sleeved shirts just yet. These types of clothes, especially those with dark colors, offer protection against the sun.
  • Gimme the sunnies - When heading outdoors, ensure your sunglasses are labeled with a UVA/UVB rating of 100%, and do not mistake a dark tint as having more protection. If you have kids, be cautious of toy sunglasses, which typically offer no UV protection.

If you have any questions, contact Anna or Taylor in the HR Service Center at or 844-OUR-HR4U (844-687-4748).

Sun’s out, shades on | News