The Diabetic Eye Center at Illinois Eye Institute is in place to identify diabetic retinopathy and to treat the eye disease before the development of permanent vision loss. The Diabetic Eye Center provides eye exams, visual fields, OCTs, and specialized care for diabetic patients each and every day.
Founded in 1872 on Chicago’s south side, the Illinois College of Optometry (ICO)’s mission is to develop highly qualified clinical optometrists through excellence in optometric education. ICO is the largest institution in the country dedicated solely to the training of future optometrists, offering a four-year program of study leading to a doctorate in optometry (OD). Each year, ICO prepares more than 630 students and residents from around the world who begin their studies with a broad foundation in basic sciences, and end in mastering the skills necessary to provide a full scope of optometric care.
Clinical training occurs through the Illinois Eye Institute (IEI), the patient care division of the College. The IEI is nationally renowned for its large patient volume, namely serving Chicago’s underserved and disadvantaged communities. The IEI is the largest provider of comprehensive, multi-specialty eye care in Illinois, including: primary eye care, pediatric optometry, binocular vision, low vision rehabilitation, contact lenses, emergency care, and the treatment and management of the diseases that affect eye health. With more than 120,000 patient visits annually, and 61 eye examination lanes, the IEI offers its students the volume, complexity, and diversity of patient care experiences needed to be successful in their careers.
Medicaid and charitable services account for more than half of the IEI’s total activity, despite the fact that Illinois has one of the lowest Medicaid reimbursement rates in the country. Each year, the IEI provides primary and advanced eye care to nearly 20,000 un/underinsured patients, the majority of which comes from Chicago’s south and southwestern communities, is racially diverse, primarily low-income and medically underserved. Through donated services and materials, the IEI provides extensive charitable services to address the unique needs of its diverse patient population.