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‘Field of vision’ ophthalmology clinic opens at Timmins & District Hospital to serve region

A new facility for visiting ophthalmologists – eye doctors – has officially opened on the grounds of the Timmins and District Hospital.

It’s for locums who come in for a week or two at a time,  to work alongside fulltime local ophthalmologist Dr. Alejandro Oliver.

It will cut down on the number of patients to be sent to Sudbury, North Bay or further.

TADH chief of staff ,  Dr. Doug Arnold compares it to the Kevin Costner movie “Field of Dreams”,  in which he hears a voice telling him to build a baseball field.

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“Rather than a field of dreams,” Arnold comments,”I kind of feel like we have a field of vision here. We will build it and the ophthalmologists will come.”

Dr. Oliver says it will allow more people to receive the eye care they need in the region.  He notes that doctors go into medicine to help people.

“So it’s been very heartbreaking for me and my staff to turn people away that need help, to ask them to go to Sudbury and North Bay, sometimes even Toronto. It’s really hard on the soul,” he told the ribbon cutting ceremony.

The hospital board is in talks with other ophthalmologists to use the facility on a locum basis, and hopes to open similar facilities for other medical specialties.

Taking part in the ribbon cutting are, left to right, TADH chief of staff Cr. Doug Arnold, locum ophthalmologist Dr. Marie Louise Lapointe, TADH ophthalmologist Dr. Alejandro Oliver, TADH board chair Kraymr Grenke, Timmins mayor Michelle Boileau and Barb McCormick, donor relations manager for the hospital foundation. The foundation dedicated the proceeds of the December 50-50 draw to establishing the clinic.
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