Casey Eye Institute to Provide Free Vision Screenings as Part of Pacific Northwest Diabetes Health and Wellness Week

Circle on the Court event provides the community with valuable services and resources targeting diabetes

November 7, 2012 --­– Linda Stronzinsky has been diabetic for 20 years. She's a part-time cashier and is barely making ends meet – and she has no health insurance. And, until she visited the Casey Eye Institute's Outreach Van this year, her eyes hadn't been examined for 12 years.

For people in Stronzinsky's situation, it can be difficult to find health care resources, especially specialty services for a complex and multifaceted disease such as diabetes. The 2012 Pacific Northwest Diabetes Health and Wellness Week, co-hosted by Novo Nordisk and the Chris Dudley Foundation, brings together those much-needed resources.

Occurring each November in recognition of World Diabetes Day, Pacific Northwest Diabetes Health and Wellness Week includes many educational events throughout the region. The Casey Eye Institute and the Harold Schnitzer Diabetes Health Center at Oregon Health & Science University will be involved in three of those events.

This Saturday, November 10, Pacific Northwest Diabetes Health and Wellness Week will kick off with the Circle on the Court event at the Rose Garden. A variety of organizations will be on hand, offering access to health care providers, educational sessions, healthy cooking demonstrations, kids sports clinics and much more. The Harold Schnitzer Diabetes Health Center will provide individualized education based on on-site health screening results and the Casey Outreach Van will provide free vision screening services for eye diseases such as diabetic retinopathy.

"The Casey Eye Outreach Van has been a lifesaver for me; without it, I wouldn't have found out how bad my eyes really are," Stronzinsky said. "Since I don't have insurance, I didn't know who to go to and even what to ask; I'm one of those people who is slipping through the cracks. I would highly recommend that people take advantage of resources like the Circle on the Court event and the Casey Eye van."

Stronzinsky got her eyes screened this year at a Casey Outreach Van event at Rosewood Clinic, one of the many community partners that the van visits to provide free vision screening services. Her screening showed swelling in her retina, cataracts and diabetic retinopathy. Casey Eye Institute and Rosewood Clinic staff are working with community partners to help Stronzinsky access the continued vision care she needs.

Circle on the Court event details

When: Saturday, November 10, 2012
             9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Where: Rose Garden Arena
              One Center Court, Portland, OR  97227

Registration: The Circle on the Court event is free and anyone is welcome to attend.  For a full list of Pacific Northwest Diabetes Health and Wellness Week events, visit www.unite4wellness.org

The Harold Schnitzer Diabetes Health Center will also be hosting free health screenings at OHSU's Center for Health and Healing on November 14 in recognition of World Diabetes Day and the Fifth Annual Pacific Northwest Diabetes Summit on November 17.

The Casey Eye Institute at OHSU provides free vision screening services for people in need across Oregon through the Casey Outreach Van. Since it began services in November 2010, the van has provided vision screenings for more than 1,600 Oregonians. Through partnerships with programs serving low income, uninsured or underinsured Oregonians, participants are examined at no cost, and community partners assist individuals who need further vision care. The 33-foot, fully outfitted mobile ophthalmology unit and its medical supplies are purchased through the generosity of private donors and staffed by dedicated volunteers.

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