Friday, January 24, 2014

The Eye Institute Renovation & Re-Dedication

This Sunday we are celebrating the re-dedication and renovation of The Eye Institute in Oak Lane. This has a very special meaning to me as it was my class that was the very first one to see patients on a regular basis there. In 1978, when the building was first opened, it was considered a state-of-the-art facility, winning all sorts of architectural awards for innovation and design. From my recollection, it looked like the inside of a ship, with exposed HVAC ducts (bright green and blue), the exam rooms which were located in modules on the second floor had walls that extended only 3/4 of the way up and there were no places for student-faculty consultations other than small offices and hallways. One could walk up and down the halls and hear every interaction between students, patients and instructors. Not exactly HIPPA compliant! Visual field testing was done at the end of a hallway or on a tangent screen in the rear of each exam room. Fast forward to today, where, thanks to the vision and hard work of my predecessor, Dr. Tom Lewis and others including Dr. Sue Oleszewski, Mr. Pat Sweeney, Mr. Don Kates, the Salus Board of Trustees and a host of very generous private and corporate donors, this 35+ year old facility has once again been transformed into the state-of-the-art vision care facility that is second to none.  

I want to pass along my heartfelt thanks to all those who had a hand in transforming our flagship clinical facility into what it is today - Philadelphia's leading eye care facility.  This extensive undertaking is totally aligned with our long-standing commitment to our mission to provide competent, comprehensive and patient-centered vision care to all who seek services, while at the same time, providing the highest quality clinical education to optometric trainees and the community it serves. The excellent quality of care patients experience is now enhanced by a beautifully designed modern clinical space.

This newly designed facility also provides us with a wonderful opportunity to integrate a Patient Centered Medical Home into our practice sometime in the future.  As we continue to mature as one of the nation's leading Health Science Professions Universities we have the responsibility to continue to evolve our healthcare delivery model to meet the demands of a very fluid healthcare delivery environment. This must include weaving primary care directly into our current delivery model.  As I've stated in previous blogs, I believe a Patient Centered Medical Home model provides a cost-effective way to deliver high quality, essential care to the community we service directly in Oak Lane but also an opportunity to model this for other locations.  Have a great weekend!

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