A regional health provider is starting up new eye clinics in Petersburg and Wrangell this year.
The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium will be offering eye exams at the Petersburg Medical Center February 3rd through the 6th. SEARHC is a non-profit consortium of 18 Native communities in Southeast and offers health care services at Mt. Edgecumbe hospital in Sitka along with Juneau Medical Center.
Dr. Pam Steffes said SEARHC has traditionally contracted with other providers to offer services in Petersburg and Wrangell. “The goal really is to bring core health care services, which includes eye care, out to the communities where our patients are, bringing the care as close to them as possible,” Steffes said. “And we have the opportunity to do that with eye care. SEARHC has expanded our eye care providers over the years. We now have four optometrists working for SEARHC throughout the region and that gives us the opportunity to expand and travel out to Petersburg this year and Wrangell as well.”
SEARHC plans a similar clinic in Wrangell in May, and then will be back to both communities in the fall. The plan is to offer the clinics twice a year in both towns.
“You know you think about going in for an eye exam and getting your prescription for glasses but we do also have the ability to do dialated eye health exams, checking for glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, other eye diseases,” Steffes noted. “We can do cataract surgery referrals, just help anybody with comprehensive eye care.”
To schedule an appointment call the Sitka Eye Clinic at 966-8415.