Asian Eye Institute covering all the bases, from eye exams to diagnostic tests to surgeries, there is no reason to relegate eye care to the bottom of one’s list of priorities anymore.With
As Asian Eye strives to shine a light on the importance of eye care, it continues to expand to different locations in order to reach out and educate more Filipinos.
PH’s largest eye center
In just a little over a decade, the institute has become the country’s largest eye center with nine clinics in Metro Manila and the Calabarzon area.
An expansion rollout saw the institute opening six clinics—independently and with different healthcare providers as partners—in the last four years. These include a satellite clinic at Commercenter Alabang, Asian Eye Vision Center in Makati, Family Vision Center at the UP Town Center, EyeSite surgery centers in Sto. Tomas, Batangas and Quezon City, and an EyeSite optical shop inside First Philippine Industrial Park in Batangas.
From eight Harvard-trained doctors when it opened in 2001, the center now has 18 foreign
educated specialists. With this growth, Asian Eye was able to form teams that subspecialize in a host of disciplines—uveitis, pediatric ophthalmology and strabismus, among others—to support sustainability of practice and knowledge transfers among doctors. In some situations, two to three doctors can team up and work together in treating patients with complicated cases.
Meanwhile, the complement of support staff has grown from 52 to 170 individuals, enabling the institute to open more clinics while being able to handle the growing number of patients more efficiently.
Asian Eye is also one of the most progressive centers of its kind. It was the first to bring the newest technologies and treatments to the Philippines, such as the Supracor laser treatment for presbyopia, VICTUS Femtolaser cataract surgery and EyeScan.
In fact, the introduction of the EyeScan prescreening service in 2015 is one of the highlights of the institute’s 16year history.
EyeScan uses an innovative camera technology that photographs the front and back parts of the eye to determine if the patient is at risk for or has early
signs of sight-threatening eye problems.
“EyeScan has minimal cost but has significant impact on society. Through EyeScan, we can reach out to more patients, create awareness about the different eye problems and encourage them to take charge of their eye health,” says Asian Eye president Benjamin K. Liboro of the 15-minute procedure.
Eye care ecosystem
EyeScan is at the center of what is envisioned to be an eye care ecosystem where it will serve to refer patients with eye problems to Asian Eye’s diagnostic and surgical centers. Any of the six satellite clinics can do comprehensive eye exams and diagnostic tests, after which patients who were diagnosed with a condition and needing of surgeries shall be referred to one of the surgical centers.
“The ecosystem setup enables us to catch a wider net of individuals; the spread makes our clinics more accessible to patients. On the other hand, it makes the surgical center operation more efficient,” Liboro says.
Another watershed moment came with the sub-brand EyeSite, which heralded the move to cater to what had been, for Asian Eye, a hitherto untapped market.
“For many years, Asian Eye had been seeing many patients who needed eye care treatment but had financial difficulties that kept them from getting the help they needed. EyeSite is able to offer services that address the more common eye conditions at rates that are 30% to 40% less than Asian Eye,” Liboro notes.
Ladderized optometry programs
Recently, Asian Eye set up the integrated ladderized optometry programs of Southwestern University in Cebu and Lyceum of the Philippines University in Manila. The pioneering six-year course will see students program in optical technician in the first two years, BS Ophthalmic Optometry in Year 3 and Year 4, and doctor of optometry (comprehensive optometry) after six years.
The program is envisioned to produce optometrists that are ready to fill in the needs of Asian Eye and, at the same time, address the scarcity of optometrists in the Philippines.
In the future, Asian Eye clients can expect even more rapid expansion within the eye care industry as it gears towards offering services to a growing population and a widening middle class.
d a widening middle class. This evolution could possibly include entry into related fields as the institute looks to fill the gaps within the health care sphere.
“You can also expect disruption in the way eye hospitals are traditionally run, and in the way we have partnered with schools to fill the employment needs of growing centers like Asian Eye,” Liboro says of Asian Eye’s plans.
The longtime president of Asian Eye further stresses: “Patient safety and family-centered care will continue to be at the forefront of our efforts to provide high quality and comprehensive eye care services. Focus will be on making the importance of eye care easier to grasp and easier to practice, with special attention placed on communicating with patients through mediums that are easy to access and methods that appeal to their priorities.”
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