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Letter from the Medical Director

Dr. Richard Shapiro

I have been involved with the clinic since its inception. Working here has become a passion of
mine and I take great pride in being able to help people either by giving them glasses or treating
diseases such as cataracts, glaucoma and diabetes.
I am proud of our clinic in that we may be the only free-standing Lions clinic in the State of Florida
and perhaps the entire country. What we do has been extremely rewarding for both my wife and me. I look
forward to continuing for many years to come.
We have a great core of volunteers and staff. What they do is greatly appreciated. I want to
thank all of them from the bottom of my heart and thank everyone who has made a commitment
either by time or money to the clinic.

Sincerely yours,
Dr. Richard Shapiro | Medical Director

This excerpt take from our 2017 Annual report
Feel free to download and view our entire 2017 Annual Report

 

A Letter from the President

bobHIn 1925 at the Lions International Convention in Cedar Point, OH, Helen Keller said, “The only thing
worse than being blind is having sight but no vision.” With this thought in mind, the vision of a
handful of Lions and retired Ophthalmologists culminated when they chartered the Lions Eye Clinic
in Bonita Springs. Done in collaboration with the Bonita Springs Lions Club, the clinic medical staff
includes eighteen (18) professional volunteers of which the majority are retired Ophthalmologists
who give their time and services for free.
Now known as “Florida Lions Eye Clinic,” it is the only facility of its kind in Florida to offer free comprehensive
eye care examinations and therapeutic care for those who have no public or private health
insurance and meet below 200% of the Federal poverty level guideline. Since its inception in 2008,
the clinic has provided free eye care to over 10,000 patients and more than 75 surgeries and laser treatments at a total savings of over $800,000 which would have been spent to provide this care. Our vision “We Give the Gift of Sight” would not be possible without the generosity of the public and the volunteer service of our doctors and staff. A special thank you to the Board of Directors and the staff of Florida Lions Eye Clinic who have helped this year
to be a successful one. I leave you with “Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much,” Helen Keller.

Robert Hilliard | President, Board of Directors

This excerpt take from our 2017 Annual report
Feel free to download and view our entire 2017 Annual Report

 

Seeing is believing

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Erika Serrato’s eyesight had been deteriorating for seven years.

When she worked outside, her eyes would become painfully dry and irritated, she said through a translator.

As her eye disease worsened, Serrato’s fears of blindness increased.

She was suffering from pterygium, an abnormal growth of fibrovascular tissue which extends from the “white” of the eye onto the cornea and eventually over the iris.

On a recent Thursday afternoon, a grateful Serrato sat in the waiting room of the Florida Lions Eye Clinic waiting for a checkup after surgery on her second eye.

This was the fifth time she had traveled three hours from Dade City to the eye clinic in Bonita Springs for assessments, surgeries and follow-up appointments.

Arranging transportation and finding a friend to act as an interpreter was not easy, but she was more than willing to do it.

The Florida Lions Eye Clinic is the only facility in the state offering free eye care and surgeries to uninsured people living at 200 percent or more below the federal poverty line.

Formerly known as the Bonita Lions Eye Clinic, it recently changed its name to reflect the greater geography of the clientele it serves, said its new Executive Director Tamika Seaton.

“We have had patients come from as far as Tampa, Miami and all over the region to see us,” she said. “They didn’t have any other options.”

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FLORIDA LIONS EYE CLINIC NOW PERFORMS ARGON LASER TREATMENT

Sherman Laser

On June 14, 2017, Dr. Robert Sherman performed Argon Laser Treatment on the clinic’s first set of patients receiving retinal therapy.
This laser is used for many different ophthalmic procedures, including retina disorders, glaucoma, corneal and ocular tumors, conjunctivitis, and astigmatism.
The treatment is done by inducing heat energy in the retina which creates small scars to cauterize blood vessels. The procedure is painless and performed in our surgery room.
Pictured is Dr. Sherman performing the Argon Laser Treatment on one of our patients at the eye clinic. He is an ophthalmologist trained to diagnose, treat and manage diseases and trauma of the eye. This treatment would not be possible without the generous donation of the laser machine by Dr. Rachid Aouchiche at West Coast Eye Center in Fort Myers.

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