The Lions Club of Grand Cayman has continued its support of the Lions Eye Clinic at the Health Services Authority with the recent donation of just over $16,000 worth of essential eye examination equipment.
Lions Club President Eric Anderson said the donation of two new examination chairs to the clinic follows on the Club’s donation of 15 new chairs for the waiting room area last year totaling $2820.
HSA Deputy Medical Director Dr. Courtney Cummings welcomed the donations and the Club’s continued support of the Clinic.
“The two examination chairs and ophthalmic stands donated will replace the previous ones in each exam room. They will be much more comfortable for the patients and provide greater functionality for exams and various procedures. We are very grateful to the Lion’s Club’s for their continued involvement with the Lion’s Eye Clinic and fundraising for this significant equipment upgrade which will benefit the people Cayman Islands.
Anderson explained that during the 2020/2021 Lionistic year the then board was advised that the eye clinic, which the Club has been committed to assisting, was in need of some attention.
“The first indication was when a director at the time Gary Franklin noticed the Lions sign outside the clinic was in bad condition. He also noticed there weren’t enough chairs in the waiting area for patients,” he said.
A meeting was held with Clinic Manager Diane Benson to get a sense of what was happening there and how the Club could assist.
“We learned they needed quite a few items. Most importantly were chairs for the waiting area and new examination chairs for the doctors. The chairs in the waiting area were old and worn out. Some of them were transferred to other departments for use. Their examination chairs were also getting old. The leather on the examination chair was started to crack and the metal components were rusting,” Anderson shared.
Given the situation with COVID-19 at the time and limited fundraising opportunities due to local regulations the board was challenged at first to take on the task of replacing such expensive equipment as it was not within the budget.
“However, the Service Chair Lion Anthony Ritch reminded us that sight is one of LCI ‘s global causes and the Clinic bears our name. We have to find a way to increase the budget and get the badly needed equipment. The board instructed me to go out and get prices for the equipment as soon as possible,” he said.
Through persistence, which is a key feature of a Lion’s member, the Club with the assistance of Randy Buck at Workplace Environments sourced the needed chairs and the new examination chairs through Paul Underwood of Perspectives International. Though the chairs for the waiting area were delivered in April 2021, the examination chair took much longer due to COVID and material shortages.
“However, both examination chairs are on the island, and one has been installed so far. The other has not been installed due to engineering issues at HSA,” Anderson said.
Once ready patients at the Clinic will benefit from the new and improved equipment, he said, adding it will be another successful project completed by the Club.