UIW Breaks Ground on Eye Care and Health Institute

At a groundbreaking ceremony held August 14, the University of the Incarnate Word  announced construction of the UIW Eye Care and Health Institute located at 2527 E. Commerce Street (corner of Walters and Commerce, two blocks north of St. Philip’s College).

This $8 million-dollar institute will be a 30,000 square-foot modern public health care facility poised to serve the vision care needs of residents on the Eastside and surrounding areas.  Patients will be served by licensed eye care doctors and interns from UIW’s Rosenberg School of Optometry. In addition to UIW funding, the City of San Antonio also invested in the project.  Through the City’s Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone #11 (TIRZ 11), $1.2 million has been allocated for this project and $1.6 million has been allocated through the City’s Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), Section 108 Funds.

“The uniqueness of this futuristic Eye Institute is that it will be founded on the same values that serve as the foundation for all University of the Incarnate Word projects. It will be a community partnership committed to excellence in patient care and education within a context of faith, human dignity and social justice,” said Dr. Andrew Buzzelli, dean Rosenberg School of Optometry.

The need for this facility is critical as there is only one private optometry office located on the Eastside, a community of 143,500 residents. In addition, diseases that can destroy vision, such as diabetes and glaucoma, are overrepresented in the populations who form the majority of the Eastside and neighboring communities. The new UIW Eye Care and Health Institute will focus on access to eye care for vulnerable populations, particularly children, the elderly, and the uninsured. Patients will be accepted regardless of their ability to pay.

For more information, contact Margaret Garcia, UIW associate director of public relations, at (210) 829-6001 or  mlgarci2@uiwtx.edu.

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