“Cataracts, especially advanced ones, can affect the patient in so many ways, especially their livelihood,” Dr. Sun recently said in an interview with the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery Foundation, which conducts the Operation Sight program. “It’s rewarding to be able to restore someone’s sight with an outpatient surgery and in one day! I want to be able to use the skills as a cataract surgeon as much as possible and am glad that I can help with these patients in my local area. They have already been pre-screened and are so thankful for their new vision so it’s an easy win.”
About Dr. Sun
A native Houstonian, Dr. Sun is a fellowship-trained, board certified, cornea specialist. After graduating at the top of her class at Katy Taylor High School, Dr. Sun attended college and medical school at Northwestern University in Chicago. She then completed her residency in ophthalmology at the prestigious Baylor College of Medicine in Houston and completed her Cornea and Refractive surgery fellowship training at the University of Minnesota Medical School.
Dr. Sun is Berkeley Eye Center’s Pearland Ophthalmologist. There, she provides comprehensive ophthalmic care of patients with cataract, glaucoma and diabetes.
Bringing Cataract Care to Patients In Need
As a member of the Operation Sight Network, Dr. Sun has restored sight to many patients in the Houston area. Through her volunteerism, she has made cataract care accessible to patients who would not otherwise have the means to receive it.
To qualify for Operation Sight, patients must be:
- At or below the 200% of the Federal Poverty Level defined by the Federal Poverty Guidelines;
- Uninsured or underinsured (insurance must not cover cataract surgery);
- And must have a formal cataract diagnosis where cataract surgery has been deemed medically necessary.
“I went into ophthalmology hoping to serve in missions throughout my career,” Dr. Sun said. “With small kids and the pandemic, it is difficult to participate in international mission trips at this time. It has been so wonderful, however, to have the opportunity to use my skills locally to help those in need. These patients are so grateful to have cataract surgery and are willing to drive a long way to get their surgery done. I did not realize there were so many patients who need help in my local area and I’m thankful that I can help these patients without having to do any travel.”
Volunteering for Operation Sight
Operation Sight consists of a network of established charitable organizations and ASCRS member volunteer surgeons who perform the surgeries. In addition to performing cataract surgery, the volunteer surgeons/practices provide routine follow-up care for a 90-day period after the procedure.
This is a growing program in the Houston area with an increasing need for volunteer support. Dr. Sun encourages other ophthalmologists who may be interested in volunteering with the program to learn more.
“We are already so well trained to do cataract surgery and just adding one patient a month will really help impact the local community,” Dr. Sun said. “There is no minimum requirement and obviously no upper limit to the patients you can help. We all know that cataract surgery can make a huge difference in someone’s life why not help those who don’t have the resources for cataract surgery?”
A Team Effort in Helping Cataract Patients
Volunteering with Operation Sight is a team effort, including coordination from Berkeley Eye Center’s administrative staff, eyecare staff and surgical center.
“Our company is always trying to look for ways we can give back to the community, and being a part of the ASCRS foundation is an amazing way to give back to the community,” Dr. Sun said. “The staff is always excited to see how these patients do after their cataract surgery.”
For all Operation Sight-related inquiries, please contact Jaya Minhas, Program Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org.