SURREY — The eyes have it.
A cool $1.2 million, that is.
That considerable amount of money was raised for Project Eye at an inaugural Bollywood Ball in Surrey recently.
The donations will help equip a retinal operating room at the Jim Pattison Outpatient Care and Surgery Centre in Whalley.
“This OR will allow an additional 500 retinal surgeries to be performed each year,” noted Kate Naylor, a communications project coordinator for Fraser Health.
The $1.2 million included $250,000 from the Retinal Surgical Associates, and donations from Bausch + Lomb, the Tzu Chi Foundation, St. Mary’s Health Foundation, Toronto Dominion, MacDonald Realty, Berezan Management, RBC Wealth Management (Pamela Drakos), the Rockel Group, Fraserview Cedar Products, and others.
Chris Gruhn, director of sales for Bausch + Lomb Canada, said the new operating room in Surrey will be Canada’s first Centre of Excellence in Retinal Management.
“We are excited about the future we have with this outstanding team of retinal surgeons,” he said.
Local billionaire Jim Pattison said it’s “great to see” that the centre bearing his name is “continuing to attract investment, particularly in the area of surgical innovation and the best quality care.”
Dr. Hugh Parsons, chief of surgery at Surrey Memorial Hospital and a member of the Retinal Surgical Associates, said this will help provide patients with access to “the most innovative” equipment.
“Every day we see the difference a great surgeon can make with the right piece of equipment and we are committed to providing the best care we can.”
Jane Adams, president and CEO of Surrey Hospital and Outpatient Centre Foundation, said Fraser Health’s surgeons “must be progressive and innovate to meet the health needs of Canada’s fastest growing region.
Adams said the partnership with Bausch + Lomb “will allow us to lead the country in advancing the treatment of retinal disease, the leading cause of blindness in Canada.”