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Gimbel Eye Centre Views Additional Cataract Surgeries as Positive Step

Calgary – Gimbel Eye Centre believes the Alberta Health Services (AHS) decision to fund an additional 1,400 cataract surgeries over the next four months, and up to an additional 120 corneal transplants this year, is positive news for Albertans.

“We, along with many others, have been encouraging the Minister to focus funding where wait lists are the longest. Patients waiting for their surgeon-of-choice will benefit from this announcement,” says Dr. Howard Gimbel, Executive Medical Director of Gimbel Eye Centre, and one of it’s four surgeons. “This is an important step toward an interim solution addressing long waiting lists for cataract surgery.”

The new surgical blitz is aimed at reducing long wait times for cataract surgeries, with 1000 surgeries designated for Calgary and 400 surgeries assigned to Edmonton.

Cataract service providers have two weeks to respond to an Expression of Interest document distributed on May 20, 2010. According to the AHS news release, contracts will be awarded to all approved, accredited facilities interested in providing the service within the guidelines stipulated and with the understanding that the surgeries will be completed by September 30, 2010.

Gimbel Eye Centre will be responding positively to the Expression of Interest document and hopes that at least some of their patients will be able to have their cataract surgeries in both its Calgary and Edmonton surgical centres. Gimbel Eye Centre patients have been having their cataract surgeries at another surgical facility in Calgary and Edmonton since AHS began limiting the facilities that could perform surgeries as of April 1, 2010.

“We will continue to participate in the consultation process that the Minister has initiated. We believe that patients deserve the freedom to choose their surgeon as well as the surgical facility where it is provided,” adds Dr. Gimbel.

Family owned and operated, Gimbel Eye Centre offers patients the full range of options for vision correction surgery available today. Trusted by Canadians since 1964, Gimbel Eye Centre has performed over 200,000 procedures and is one of the most experienced vision correction centres in the world, with locations in Calgary and Edmonton, Alberta.

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