Originally designed to equip optometrists to provide no-cost eye exams and glasses for those affected by disaster, SeeZar is one of three VSP Mobile Eyes clinics that have already traveled more than 432,005 miles (695,245 kilometres) across the U.S. to partner with local communities and charitable organizations to increase access to eye care wherever there’s a need. This summer, we updated our maps, readied SeeZar’s passport and made the 2,500-mile (4,023-kilometre) trip to Toronto, Canada!
Over three days, nearly 150 adults and children received no-cost eye exams and, if prescribed, glasses through a partnership with Buck Consultants, A Xerox Company; FYidoctors, Canada’s largest optometry company; and United Way Toronto & York Region.
Buck Consultants connected VSP Mobile Eyes with three United Way Hubs that provide a central location for residents in need to access medical, wellness, educational, and other services. The Hubs hosted the VSP Mobile Eyes clinic, staffed by local FYidoctors optometrists, who generously volunteered their time and expertise to provide eye exams.
“Many people think an eye exam is just about checking for a change in their prescription. But in fact an eye exam is about much more, detecting potentially serious health issues like diabetes, heart disease and even cancer,” says Dr. Gary Gimpel, a senior executive with FYidoctors. “Through a full, comprehensive eye exam, like the ones we provide at FYidoctors, we assess your true visual ability, any vision correction required, the health of your eyes to prevent any form of vision loss, systemic health concerns should they present in the eyes and when required, we treat and manage these conditions. Routine comprehensive eye exams are important for patients of all ages and walks of life. So we feel honored to help those Canadians that might not have access to regular eye care.”
“Canada is facing a growing crisis in vision health, yet 75% of vision loss can be treated or prevented,” says VSP Vision Care Canada Regional Vice President Carmen Valente. “Bringing the VSP Mobile Eyes clinic to Toronto is a first step to increasing access to high-quality eye care for Canadians in need.”
View photos from the three days of outreach in Toronto: