Double Vision

You made it possible for the Ivey Eye Institute to double access to emergency eye care.
Dr. Fatemah Alali looking beyond a piece of medical equipment

Dr. Fatemah Alali says that the expanded emergency care treatment space and new equipment in the Ivey Eye Institute is a game changer.

“It has changed the way we work and improved our approach to care,” says the fourth-year physician resident.

With donor support, the Ivey Eye Institute recently underwent renovations to double the space for urgent and emergency eye care. This has meant shorter wait times, increased privacy for patients and improved flow for care. And with new equipment, including slit lamp microscopes with cameras attached, physicians are now able to show patients what’s happening to their eye on a computer screen in real time.

Dr. Rachel McInnis standing outside an exam room.
Dr. Rachel McInnis, a third-year physician resident, marvels at the new space and equipment at the Ivey Eye Institute.

Dr. Alali recalls a paediatric patient who arrived late one night with metal embedded in his eye. He was in pain, anxious and afraid that he might lose his sight. She says that showing him the images on the screen helped to relieve some of his anxiousness.

“It’s amazing,” says Dr. Rachel McInnis, a third-year physician resident, of the new space and equipment. As part of her training, Dr. McInnis spent her entire second year working in the Ivey Eye Institute’s emergency care space. That was before the expansion and installation of new equipment. Now, when working on call, she has experienced a dramatic difference.

“It’s made us so much more efficient, and it is much better for patients,” she says. “Before we would have to move people in and out of the rooms, and it was so disruptive for people with accessibility challenges or who arrive on stretchers.”

Drs. Alali and McInnis say there is a steady stream of people arriving at St. Joseph’s needing urgent or emergency eye care every day.

“On a typical Saturday, I can see up to 15 people in an eight-hour shift from across the region and as far north as Sault Ste. Marie,” says Dr. McInnis.

Art Currie
Inspired by the care he has received over the years, Art Currie directs his donations to the Ivey Eye Institute.

Some people arrive with retinal detachments and some with scratches on the surface of their eyes. Others show up with an eye problem only to discover that they are experiencing a symptom for a more complex disease or condition such as stroke, metastatic cancer or multiple sclerosis.

Art Currie, who has been receiving care at the Ivey Eye Institute for more than 30 years, was proud to direct his recent gift to the expansion.

“The doctors there are great, and I want to ensure they always have the best equipment and facilities to do the work they do,” says Art.

Thanks to Art’s support and the generosity of hundreds of donors during the past two years, the expansion was completed very quickly and is already helping so many people every day.

"It’s made us so much more efficient, and it is much better for patients."

– Dr. Rachel McInnis

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