Manila Bulletin

Asian Eye adapts to COVID-19, of­fers tele­con­sul­ta­tion, on­line de­liv­ery op­tions

- Health · Pharmaceutical Industry · Glaucoma · Medications · Medicine · Cataracts · Society · Eye Health · Infectious Diseases · Macular Degeneration · Industries · Health Conditions · Pharmacology

Lopez-led Asian Eye In­sti­tute, the coun­try’s eye care cen­ter with the widest net­work of eye clin­ics, has in­tro­duced al­ter­na­tive clinic pro­ce­dures and ser­vices to safely con­tinue serv­ing eye pa­tients who need ur­gent treat­ment, in­clud­ing sur­gi­cal pro­ce­dures, even in the midst of the pan­demic.

Asian Eye’s al­ter­na­tive ser­vices of­fer safety and convenienc­e, es­pe­cially for se­nior cit­i­zens and peo­ple with weak­ened im­mune sys­tem; as well as for pa­tients who do not live near a health or eye care cen­ter, or whose move­ments are re­stricted by quar­an­tine rules or by lack of trans­porta­tion.

“Stay­ing home is an im­por­tant way to limit the spread of COVID-19, but we still need to make sure that pa­tients re­ceive their much-needed care for eye prob­lems, like glau­coma, di­a­betic retinopa­thy and age-re­lated mac­u­lar de­gen­er­a­tion, which re­quire reg­u­lar mon­i­tor­ing to pre­vent blind­ness,” said Asian Eye Chief Op­er­at­ing Of­fi­cer Al­win Sta. Rosa.

“Our new ser­vices and pro­ce­dures rep­re­sent Asian Eye’s re­sponse to the most press­ing con­cern of eye pa­tients – how to con­tinue re­ceiv­ing eye care, prod­ucts and med­i­ca­tion in the safest man­ner even in a pan­demic,” Sta. Rosa added.

Asian Eye of­fer­ings in­clude video tele­con­sul­ta­tions, elec­tronic pre­scrip­tions and on­line de­liv­ery ser­vices that al­low pa­tients to get their eye care needs – glasses, con­tact lenses, pro­tec­tive eyewear and medicine – with­out leav­ing their homes. For on­line ser­vices and tele­con­sul­ta­tions, pa­tients are ad­vised to visit this link .

“But if dur­ing the tele­con­sul­ta­tion the doc­tor rec­om­mends an in-clinic checkup, then we re­fund the tele­con­sul­ta­tion fee in fa­vor of a by-ap­point­ment clinic checkup. Tele­con­sul­ta­tion is our way of screen­ing pa­tients to de­ter­mine whether they truly need to leave their homes for more com­pre­hen­sive check­ups,” Sta. Rosa ex­plained.

“All Asian Eye health­care staff wear per­sonal pro­tec­tive equip­ment. To limit close con­tact be­tween med­i­cal staff and pa­tients, we also in­sti­tuted low-touch con­sul­ta­tions and in­stalled droplet shields on the slit-lamp ma­chines that doc­tors use to look into pa­tients’ eyes. Equip­ment and fa­cil­i­ties are also rou­tinely dis­in­fected us­ing hos­pi­tal­grade dis­in­fec­tants and ul­tra­vi­o­let light ster­il­iz­ers,” Sta. Rosa added.

“As part of our health pro­to­cols, we ask pa­tients re­quir­ing surgery to un­dergo rapid anti­gen tests with re­sults re­leased within 15 to 30 min­utes. If the pa­tients test pos­i­tive for COVID-19, we ad­vise them to de­fer their surgery un­til they no longer have an ac­tive coron­avirus in­fec­tion,” he added.

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